Friday, May 25, 2007

Marshall McLuhan -The Medium is the Message,MLP,1967,USA

Herbert Marshall McLuhan CC (July 21, 1911 - December 31, 1980) was a Canadian educator, philosopher, and scholar-- a professor of English literature, a literary critic, and a communications theorist. McLuhan's work is viewed as one of the cornerstones of the study of media theory. McLuhan is well-known for coining the expressions "the medium is the message" and the "global village".
McLuhan was a fixture in media discourse from the late 1960s to his death and he continues to be an influential and controversial figure. Years after his death he was named the "patron saint" of Wired magazine.
Marshall McLuhan was born in 1911 in Edmonton, Alberta, to Methodist parents Herbert Ernest McLuhan and the former Elsie Naomi McLuhan, née Hall. His brother, Maurice, was born two years later. "Marshall" was a family name: his maternal grandmother's surname. Both of his parents were born in Canada. His mother was a Baptist schoolteacher who later became an actress. His father was a Methodist who had a real estate business in Edmonton. When war broke out, the business failed, and McLuhan's father was enlisted into the Canadian army. After a year of service he contracted influenza and remained in Canada, away from the front. After Herbert's discharge from the army in 1915, the McLuhan family moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba where Marshall grew up and went to school.
McLuhan earned a BA (1933) — winning a University Gold Medal in Arts and Sciences— and MA (1934) in English from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, after a one year stint as an engineering major. He had long desired to pursue graduate studies in England and, having failed to secure a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford, McLuhan was accepted for enrollment at the University of Cambridge. Although he already had earned BA and MA degrees at Manitoba, Cambridge required him to enroll as an undergraduate "affiliated" student, with one year's credit toward a three-year Cambridge Bachelor's degree, before any doctoral studies.He entered Trinity Hall, Cambridge in the Fall of 1934, where he studied under I. A. Richards and F. R. Leavis, and was influenced by New Criticism.Upon reflection years after, he credited the faculty there with influencing the direction of his later work because of their emphasis on the training of perception and such concepts as Richards' notion of feedforward. These studies formed an important precursor to his later ideas on technological forms.He received his second Bachelors degree from Cambridge in 1936 and began graduate work. Later, he returned from England to take a job as a teaching assistant at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which he held for the 1936-37 academic year, unable to find a suitable job in Canada.
While studying the trivium at Cambridge he took the first steps toward his eventual conversion to Roman Catholicism in 1937, founded on his reading of G. K. Chesterton. In the end of March 1937, McLuhan culminated what was a slow but total conversion process when he was formally received into the Roman Catholic Church. After consulting with a minister, his father was accepting of the decision to convert; his mother, however, felt that his conversion would hurt his career and was inconsolable. McLuhan was devout throughout his life, but his religion remained a private matter. He had a lifelong interest in the number three - the trivium, the Trinity - and sometimes said that the Virgin Mary provided intellectual guidance for him.
For the rest of his career he taught in Roman Catholic institutions of higher education. From 1937 to 1944 he taught English at Saint Louis University (with an interruption from 1939 to 1940 when he returned to Cambridge). At Saint Louis he tutored and befriended Walter J. Ong (1912-2003), who would go on to write his Ph.D. dissertation on a topic McLuhan had called to his attention, and who would himself also later become a well-known authority on communication and technology.
While in St. Louis, he also met his future wife. On 4 August 1939, McLuhan married teacher and aspiring actress Corinne Lewis of Fort Worth, Texas, and they spent 1939 to 1940 in Cambridge, where he completed his Masters degree (awarded in January 1940) and began to work on his doctoral dissertation on Thomas Nashe and the verbal arts. War had broken out in Europe while the McLuhans were in England, and he obtained permission to complete and submit his dissertation from the United States, without having to return to Cambridge for an oral defense. They returned to Saint Louis University in 1940 where he continued teaching and, with his wife, started a family. He was awarded the PhD in December 1943.
Returning to Canada, from 1944 to 1946 McLuhan taught at Assumption College in Windsor, Ontario. Moving to Toronto in 1946, McLuhan joined the faculty of St. Michael's College, a Catholic college of the University of Toronto, where Hugh Kenner was one of his students and Canadian economist and media historian Harold Innis was his colleague.
In the early 1950s, McLuhan began the Communication and Culture seminars, funded by the Ford Foundation, at the University of Toronto. As his notoriety grew, he received a growing number of offers from other universities and, to keep him, U of T created the Centre for Culture and Technology in 1963.
He published his first major work during this period: The Mechanical Bride (1951) was an examination of the impact of advertising on society and culture. He also produced an important journal, Explorations, with Edmund Carpenter throughout the 1950s. Together with Harold Innis, Eric Havelock, Derrick DeKerckhove and Barry Wellman, McLuhan and Carpenter have been characterized as the Toronto School of Communication.
McLuhan remained at U of T through 1979, spending much of this time as head of his Centre for Culture and Technology.
McLuhan was named to the Albert Schweitzer Chair in Humanities at Fordham University in the Bronx, New York, for one year (1967-68). While at Fordham, McLuhan was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor; it was treated successfully. He returned to Toronto where for the rest of his life, he worked at the University of Toronto and lived in Wychwood Park, a bucolic enclave on a hill overlooking the downtown where Anatol Rapoport was his neighbour.
Marshall and Corinne McLuhan had six children: Eric, twins Mary and Teresa, Stephanie, Elizabeth and Michael. In 1970, McLuhan was made a Companion of the Order of Canada.
The McLuhans had a large family, and the associated costs eventually drove McLuhan to advertising work and accepting frequent consulting and speaking engagements for large corporations, IBM and AT&T among them.
In September 1979 he suffered a stroke which affected his ability to speak. The University of Toronto's School of Graduate Studies tried to close his research centre shortly thereafter, but was deterred by substantial protests, most notably by Woody Allen with whom he appeared in Annie Hall.
He died in his sleep on New Year's Eve of 1980.During his years at Saint Louis University (1937-1944), McLuhan worked concurrently on two projects: his doctoral dissertation and the manuscript that was eventually published in 1951 as the book The Mechanical Bride, which included only a representative selection of the materials that McLuhan had prepared for it.
McLuhan's 1942 Cambridge University doctoral dissertation surveys the history of the verbal arts (grammar, dialectic and logic, and rhetoric -- collectively known as the trivium) from the time of Cicero down to the time of Thomas Nashe.[19] In his later publications, McLuhan at times uses the Latin concept of the trivium to outline an orderly and systematic picture of certain periods in the history of Western culture. McLuhan suggests that the Middle Ages, for instance, was characterized by the heavy emphasis on the formal study of logic. The key development that led to the Renaissance was not the rediscovery of ancient texts but a shift in emphasis from the formal study of logic to rhetoric and language. Modern life is characterized by the reemergence of grammar as its most salient feature -- a trend McLuhan felt was exemplified by the New Criticism of Richards and Leavis.
In The Mechanical Bride, McLuhan turned his attention to analyzing and commenting on numerous examples of persuasion in contemporary popular culture. This followed naturally from his earlier work as both dialectic and rhetoric in the classical trivium aimed at persuasion. At this point his focus shifted dramatically, turning inward to study the influence of communication media independent of their content. His famous slogan, "the medium is the message" (elaborated in his 1964 book, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man) calls attention to this intrinsic impact of communications media. (It should be noted that he titled his later, 1967, book The Medium is the Massage.) The slogan, "the medium is the message", is best understood in light of Bernard Lonergan's further articulation of related ideas: at the empirical level of consciousness, the medium is the message, whereas at the intelligent and rational levels of consciousness, the content is the message.
When McLuhan declares that he is more interested in percepts than concepts, he is declaring in effect that he is more interested in what Lonergan refers to as the empirical level of consciousness than in what Lonergan refers to as the intelligent level of consciousness in which concepts are formed, which Lonergan distinguishes from the rational level of consciousness in which the adequacy of concepts and of predications is adjudicated. McLuhan's inward turn to attending to percepts and to the cultural conditioning of the empirical level of consciousness through the impact of communication media sets him apart from more outward-oriented studies of sociological influences and the outward presentation of self carried out by George Herbert Mead, Erving Goffman, Berger and Luckmann, Kenneth Burke, Hugh Duncan, and others.
McLuhan also started the journal Explorations with Edmund "Ted" Carpenter.

The Medium is the Massage: An Inventory of Effects (1967)
In this book, initiated by Quentin Fiore, McLuhan adopted the term "massage" to denote the effect each medium has on the human sensorium, inventorying the "effects" of numerous media in terms of how they "massage" the sensorium.
Fiore, at the time a prominent graphic designer and communications consultant, set about composing the visual illustration of these theories. Near the beginning of the book, Fiore adopted a pattern in which an image demonstrating a media effect was presented with a textual synopsis on the facing page. The reader experiences a repeated shifting of analytic registers -- from "reading" typographic print to "scanning" photographic facsimiles -- reinforcing McLuhan's overarching argument in this book: namely, that each medium produces a different "massage" or "effect" on the human sensorium.
In The Medium is the Massage, McLuhan also rehashed the argument -- which first appeared in the Prologue to 1962's The Gutenberg Galaxy -- that media are "extensions" of our human senses, bodies and minds.
Finally, McLuhan described key points of change in how man has viewed the world and how these views were changed by the adoption of new media. "The technique of invention was the discovery of the nineteenth [century]", brought on by the adoption of fixed points of view and perspective by typography, while "[t]he technique of the suspended judgment is the discovery of the twentieth century", brought on by the bard abilities of radio, movies and television.
The Medium is the Massage (audio recording, late 1960s)
An audio recording version of McLuhan's famous work was made by Columbia Records. The recording consists of a pastiche of statements made by McLuhan interrupted by other speakers, including people speaking in various phonations and falsettos, discordant sounds and 1960s incidental music in what could be considered a deliberate attempt to translate the disconnected images seen on TV into an audio format, resulting in the prevention of a connected stream of conscious thought. Various audio recording techniques and statements are used to illustrate the relationship between spoken, literary speech and the characteristics of electronic audio media. McLuhan biographer Philip Marchand called the recording "the 1967 equivalent of a McLuhan video."
"I wouldn't be seen dead with a living work of art." - 'Old man' speaking "Drop this jiggery-pokery and talk straight turkey." - 'Middle aged man' speaking .
From Wikipedia
As you had probably understood this is the companion LP to McLuhan's book with the same title.Weird spoken word LP ,backed by electronic effects,cartoon music,pop psych tunes,screams,jazzy tunes,noises,etc.WOULD REALLY APPEAL TO ALL PSYCH HEADS OUT THERE!
get it here


Anonymous said...

Medium is the MASSAGE ... do you want the complete LP ? Go here :

This file only has the second side of the record...

Joe Seph

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Anonymous said...

request: have you got the j. marks and shipen lebzelter album, rock and other four letter words? i've got the album up on soulseek, but it is rather scratchy, and besides, more people need to become aware of it! thanks for all the great music!

vdoandsound said...

Anonymous-Funny you should mention Rock and Other Four Letter Word, as I just yanked that record out yesterday to rip and post it! Watch for it in a few days time...

andrew_bunny said...

I've never heard the Rock and other... LP, but I _did_ have the book, which featured pics by Linda McCartney.