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The Printing Press as an Agent of Change [Two Volumes] Hardcover – January, 1979

ISBN-13: 978-0521220446 ISBN-10: 0521220440 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 794 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 1st edition (January 1979)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521220440
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521220446
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,796,393 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dr Anup K Das on September 29, 2014
Format: Hardcover
In book "The Printing Press as an Agent of Change" author Elizabeth L. Eisenstein narrates theoretical and practical dimensions of communications and cultural transformations in early-modern Europe. This book is divided into three parts: (p.1) Introduction to an elusive transformation, (p.2) Classical and Christian traditions reoriented; Renaissance and reformation reappraised, (p.3) The book of nature transformed. This book contains specific chapters on aspects of history of printing technologies in early-modern Europe. Printing presses helped the European Christian missionaries to spread Christianity, biblical thoughts and philosophies in continents across Asia, Africa and Latin America. This book also narrates anecdotes of formation of scientific societies and royal academies across the European countries for strengthening scientific research.
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Format: Hardcover
This two-volume, 750-page exploration of the effects of movable type printing on the literate elite of post-Gutenberg Western Europe focuses on the printing press's functions of dissemination, standardization, and preservation and the way these functions aided the progress of the Protestant Reformation, the Renaissance, and the Scientific Revolution. Eisenstein brings historical method, rigor, and clarity to earlier ideas of Marshall McLuhan and others about the general social effects of such media transitions. This work provoked debate in the academic community from the moment it was published and is still inspiring conversation and new research today. It also has influenced later thinking about the subsequent development of digital media and Eisenstein’s work on the transition from manuscript to print has influenced thought about new transitions of print text to digital formats, including multimedia and new ideas about the definition of text.

Eisenstein here lays out her thoughts on the "Unacknowledged Revolution," her name for the revolution that occurred after the invention of print. Print media allowed the general public to have access to books and knowledge that had not been available to them before; this led to the growth of public knowledge and individual thought. The ability to formulate thought on one's own thoughts became reality with the popularity of the printing press. Print also "standardized and preserved knowledge which had been much more fluid in the age of oral manuscript circulation". Eisenstein recognizes this period of time to be very important in the development of mankind; she feels, however, that it is often overlooked, thus, the 'unacknowledged revolution'.
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