Industrial-Sized Deals TextBTS15 Shop Women's Handbags Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Andra Day $5 Off Fire TV Stick Off to College Essentials Shop Popular Services pivdl pivdl pivdl  Amazon Echo Starting at $99 Kindle Voyage Nintendo Digital Games Shop Back to School with Amazon Back to School with Amazon Outdoor Recreation Baby Sale
Sell yours for a Gift Card
We'll buy it for $2.00
Learn More
Trade in now
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Marshall McLuhan: You Know Nothing of My Work! Hardcover – November 30, 2010

11 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
"Please retry"
$54.95 $14.59
"Please retry"

Best Books of the Year So Far
Best Books of the Year So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for 2015's Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.

Editorial Reviews


“This delightful biography both entertains and instructs…illuminating the profound impact McLuhan had on how we think about media and communication.” (Ken Auletta)

“To read You Know Nothing of My Work is to behold a cultural Vulcan mind meld of mesmerizing intimacy.” (Walter Kirn)

About the Author

Douglas Coupland has published twelve novels since his first novel, Generation X, was published in 1991. He is also a visual artist, with exhibitions in North America, Europe, and Asia. He lives in Vancouver.


Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Atlas; 1 edition (November 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935633163
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935633167
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 0.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #404,586 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Important Information

Example Ingredients

Example Directions

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Martin Zook on June 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Marshall McLuhan, somewhere, is getting quite a chuckle out of Douglas Coupland's biography of the prophet of the digital age, if only because Coupland's imaginative recounting has refashioned the typographical media of the book (a keystone subject of McLuhan's work) to reflect the impact of the digital media on its aging ancester.

The result is a format that is far more engaging and immensely more informative than the voluminous biographies that dominate the genre today. The biography, more than anything else, clearly demonstrates what McLuhan meant when he wrote: "The medium is the message," in Understanding Media, his study of electronic media as it swallowed print. In that study, McLuhan pointed out that media would be forced to adapt to emerging media, or face annihilation. As an example, he pointed to two print products launched during the golden age of TV, a time when the p.m. newspaper was being wiped off the face of the planet by the disruptive electronic media. Life magazine and MAD magazine thrived because their formats reflected the influence of television's picture oriented format. Life's photos, and MAD's woodcut-like illustrations benefited from complementing the new media's format.

And, so it is with Coupland's biography of McLuhan, who prophesized the Internet 50 years ago, give or take.

The book's format of short chapters, similar to blocks of type on the Internet, direct writing typified by short declarative sentences, conversational style, with sections and chapters broken up by pages lifted from the www network, and quotes from McLuhan, demonstrate how books will change as a result of the Internet's dominance.

It's for better or worse, depending upon the eye of the beholder.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Gord Wilson VINE VOICE on July 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I just got done reading this book. Only then it was called simply "Marshall McLuhan", and appeared in a series called "Extraordinary Canadians" Extraordinary Canadians Marshall Mcluhan. It was a bio that said more about Doug Coupland than about MM, which is to say, only DC could write it. Also only DC could re-cast, -version, -vive, and re-release it, or perhaps it was his publisher, editor, agent, or manager who got the brilliant idea to rename the book after McLuhan's line in Woody Allen's "Annie Hall" (in which the late MM played himself).

After all, that's probably what most people know MM from. Or perhaps the unforgettable phrase, "The medium is the message". If anyone remembers any books, they are likely the photoessays by Jerome Agel and Quentin Fiore, "The Medium is the Massage" The Medium is the Massage: An Inventory of Effects and "War and Peace in the Global Village" War and Peace in the Global Village, which are long on photos and short on essays, and which MM had almost nothing to do with. They are sort of "greatest hits" collections of witty aphorisms, epithets, jokes, puns, and one-liners. In this MM excelled (witness the titles). Doug Coupland says that's the way his brain was wired. There was also "The Book of Probes" The Book of Probes from David Carson, author of "The End of Print".
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Gene Cassidy on April 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Douglas Coupland mixes insight about the present as seen from the past, insight about the past as seen from the present and has almost nothing to say about the future. He thinks his guess is a good as yours or mine. Who among us is smart enough and secure enough to say that?
The stuff about Marshall MacLuhan's neurology, his cultural, familial, geographic and historical background is the type of insight biographers struggle to achieve at many times the length of this precise book.
The idea that MacLuhan has been forgotten and dismissed because his work was about thinking - not the monetization and cubby-holing of thought - is Coupland's key analysis, though every page offers food for thought.
"You Know Nothing of My Work" is an inviting entryway to the imaginativeness that doomed the 60s and the thoughts of one of the Western World's greatest minds to forever stay in the 60s, while the rest of us re-invent the wheel and marvel at its shape and utility.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
21 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Thomas J. Farrell on January 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Douglas Coupland (born 1961), the prolific Canadian novelist, has written a short book about the life and thought of the Canadian Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980).

Coupland's MARSHALL MCLUHAN: YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT MY WORK! was originally published in Canada as EXTRAORDINARY CANADIANS: MARSHALL MCLUHAN, one book in the series of short books about extraordinary Canadians.

The subtitle of the American version of the book is taken from McLuhan's cameo appearance in Woody Allen's 1977 movie "Annie Hall." In the movie a pretentious academic holds forth about McLuhan's thought. But McLuhan himself emerges to tell the academic, "You know nothing about my work." Great put-down, eh?

Coupland believes that McLuhan's thought may be more important today than it was in his own lifetime, because computers and the Internet have given new meaning to McLuhan's expression the "global village."

Some younger people might not know much about Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980). Later this year, McLuhan fans will mark the 100th anniversary of his birth. But who was McLuhan, and why is he important today?

With the publication of two books in the early 1960s, THE GUTENBERG GALAXY: THE MAKING OF TYPOGRAPHIC MAN (University of Toronto Press, 1962) and UNDERSTANDING MEDIA: THE EXTENSIONS OF MAN (McGraw-Hill, 1964), McLuhan catapulted to extraordinary fame, seemingly out of nowhere. In the 1950s he had not been widely known. However, he had been known to a small group of alert admirers. But along with his fame in the 1960s and 1970s came controversy and criticism. At times, the criticism was cogent and convincing. However, the criticism directed at him was frequently off target. In any event, many of his critics wanted to throw out the baby with the bath water, as we say.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Want to discover more products? Check out this page to see more: alan marshall