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Understanding Me: Lectures and Interviews Paperback – February 11, 2005

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Editorial Reviews


...[A] fast-moving and articulate public intellectual...

(Michael R. Mosher Leonardo)

McLuhan comes across as outrageous, funny, perplexing, stimulating and provocative. How we need him now!


From the Inside Flap

Unbuttoned McLuhan! An intimate exploration of Marshall McLuhan?s ideas in his own words

In the last twenty years of his life, Marshall McLuhan published ? often in collaboration with others ? a series of books that established his reputation as the pre-eminent seer of the modern age. It was McLuhan who made the distinction between ?hot? and ?cool? media. It was he who observed that ?the medium is the message? and who tossed off dozens of other equally memorable phrases from ?the global village? and ?pattern recognition? to ?feedback? and ?iconic? imagery.

McLuhan was far more than a pithy-phrase maker, however. He foresaw ? at a time when the personal computer was a teckie fantasy ? that the world would be brought together by the internet. He foresaw the transformations that would be wrought by digital technology. He understood, before any of his contemporaries, the consequences of the revolution that television and the computer were bringing about. In many ways, we?re still catching up to him.

In Understanding Me, Stephanie McLuhan and David Staines have brought together eighteen previously unpublished lectures and interviews by or involving Marshall McLuhan. They have in common the informality and accessibility of the spoken word. In every case, the text is the transcript taken down from the film, audio, or video tape of the actual encounters ? this is not what McLuhan wrote but what he said. The result is a revelation: the seer who often is thought of as aloof and obscure is shown to be funny, spontaneous, and easily understood. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press (February 11, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262633175
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262633178
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #450,900 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Gordon Cieplak on June 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
For anyone remotely interested in McLuhan, I recommend this book for the following reasons.
It is a much easier read than most of McLuhan's work, as it is a collection of interviews and speeches which are necessarily more concise, and were for me much more involving.
It gives an insight into McLuhan's theories which can be quite puzzling and abstruse at first. In his speeches and essays, he repeats his same themes in a variety of manners, which help to give the reader a better understanding of the theories.
It's no McLuhan for Idiots (I'm not sure if there is such a thing, based on the nature of his works), but it is definitely a very useful and enjoyable companion book.
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