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2016-02-01 21:40:20 Post No. 7650010
Post No. 7650010
I'm trying to read The Gutenberg Galaxy and it just seems like fucking nonsense. McLuhan's basic point (a medium such as writing is not simply a communication tool, but fundamentally changes the way we think and perceive independently of the actual written messages -- i.e. "the medium is the message" if you want to be an obscurantist cunt about it) is brilliant and I'm really interested in reading a good analysis of this stuff, but I don't think that The Gutenberg Galaxy actually offers that; mostly he just makes completely unsubstantiated (often outrageous) claims without any attempt to support them with evidence or reasoning, or even with an explanation of what the fuck the statement in question is even supposed to mean (his claim are frequently just plain incomprehensible). It's like he just jotted down whatever he thought sounded nice (supplied with countless quotes from countless authors, not seldom every bit as outrageous and/or incomprehensible as his own statements) without the slightest attempt at rigor or organization. I looked a bit in Understanding Media and it seemed equally nonsensical.
What I'd like is either secondary literature that makes sense of what he's saying (provided that he's actually saying anything at all, which I'm not so sure about) and why it's valid (again, provided that it actually is valid), OR other works analyzing the same subject (that is, the broad-ranging influence of media on thought, perception and culture) but in a comprehensible, intellectually rigorous manner. Does anyone know of something like that?