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At the Speed of Light There is Only Illumination

A Reappraisal of Marshall McLuhan

edited by John Moss and Linda M. Morra

Publication Year: 2004

At the Speed of Light There is Only Illumination collects a dozen re-evaluative essays on Marshall McLuhan and his critical and theoretical legacy; from intellectual adventurer creating a complex architecture of ideas to cultural icon standing in line in Woody Allen’s Annie Hall. Given McLuhan’s prominent status in many academic disciplines, the contributors reflect a multi-disciplinary background. John Moss and Linda Morra chose the essays from a gathering of McLuhan’s academic devotees. The contribution – from “McLuhan as Medium” and “McLuhan in Space” to “What McLuhan Got Wrong” and “Trouble in the Global Village” – to provide a kaleidoscope of new views. As Moss writes of the collected essays: “Some are big and some are small, some exegetic and some confessional, some stand as major statements and others are sidelong glances; some resonate with the concerns of public discourse and others are private or privileged or impious and provocative. Each consists of many parts, each a design on its own. They speak to each other…they may have come together as one version of what happened.”

Published by: University of Ottawa Press

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Introduction

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pp. 1-6

LABOUR DAY EVENING, 2001; the CBC is rebroadcasting a mosaic of interviews from "This Hour Has Seven Days," originally televised in 1966. There is Pierre Trudeau, a slightly effete and nervous intellectual coaxing the Liberal Ren

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A Move to the Glebe

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pp. 7-16

I STOPPED READING BOOKS WHEN I TURNED FIFTY. Under the aegis of Marshall McLuhan, I determined that the impact of print on my life was antithetical to living well. Not being a zealot, I have not given up reading in dailies or weeklies the captions under photographs, or print on signs or cereal boxes, or printed texts emblazoned...

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McLuhan as Medium

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pp. 17-36

BY 1964, WHEN MARSHALL MCLUHAN WAS already an international culture star, I was an undergraduate at the college in the University of Toronto where he taught English literature. He was pointed out to me as he strode across campus, tall, lanky, in what looked like an orange suit. ...

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McLuhan and Canadian Communication Thought

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pp. 37-62

MARSHALL MCLUHAN WAS, if anything, enigmatic, paradoxical, and seemingly self-contradictory. Most famously, he exalted the "global village" for "retribalizing" humankind—that is, for restoring wholeness and cooperation to a humanity fragmented by print. ...

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Marshall McLuhan and the Modernist Writers' Legacy

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pp. 63-83

AFTER ALMOST TWO DECADES of more or less oblivion, Marshall McLuhan is back in vogue. Looking through the rearview mirror of knowledge, the new generation of media scholars has finally decided to resurrect him, turning the "media guru" into a powerful icon, enhancing new high-tech speculations...

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Retracing the Labyrinth of Modernism: McLuhan and the Aesthetic Moment

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pp. 85-94

MARSHALL MCLUHAN SOUNDS A KEYNOTE of his literary criticism with a description of modern art as a process of recovery by retracing. Landmark works such as Ulysses and The Waste Land move simultaneously forward and backward in a timeless present, ...

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"Shall I Say, It Is Necessary to Restore the Dialogue": Wilfred Watson's Encounter with Marshall McLuhan, 1957–1988

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pp. 95-145

1. Plato & Socrates, Kierkegaard & Ricoeur demonstrate the fallibility of man, vis a vis language. McLuhan shows us man's fallibility, vis a vis technology. Addressing himself to the optimistic liberalism of the sixties, he became world-famous, for he seemed to know more about the media explosion than anyone else. ...

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McLuhan, Media, and Hybridity: A Revaluation in the Postcolonial Context

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pp. 147-152

MARSHALL MCLUHAN'S THEORY of "hybrid energy" adopts, almost self-evidently, a hybrid structure. Although he develops and refines this concept in association with his revelations regarding various forms of media, he also links this concept with larger cultural experiences. ...

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Does the Space Make Differences? Some Geographical Remarks about Spatial Information between Harold Innis and Marshall McLuhan

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pp. 153-163

SINCE WHAT I WILL TRY TO PROBE and uncover is part of research in progress, many questions will probably remain unanswered. First, I will briefly outline, with the aid of Harold Innis's concept of "bias," some features of a possible definition of spatial information that meet the present crisis in the traditional concept of territory. ...

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McLuhan in Space

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pp. 165-184

IN 1973, MARSHALL MCLUHAN MADE A FILM for the Great Minds of Our Times series called Picnic in Space.1 The film begins with static and a voice-over of McLuhan speaking about several kinds of space—visual, acoustic, Greek, Roman, enclosed, open, and so forth. ...

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Making Sense of McLuhan Space

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pp. 185-206

METAPHOR IS A POLESTAR in the work of Marshall McLuhan: everything revolves around it. His journey through media, culture, and mind was guided largely by means of metaphor, since his thoughts on technology, his method, and his mode of presentation were all intimately oriented toward it in some form or another. ...

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What McLuhan Got Wrong about the Global Village and Some Things He Didn't Forsee

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pp. 207-221

IN MAY 2000, I accepted an invitation from the University of Ottawa to investigate Marshall McLuhan's mistakes and oversights at a commemorative conference. I was invited, at least in part, because in the realm of McLuhan studies I have become "the troll"—as one critic put it years ago—who lives under the bridge that leads to the information superhighway, the metaphor for the street system of the "Global Village." ...

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Wychewode Park

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pp. 223-225

(A PRELUDE TO A COMUS wherein the poet shews some attentions that Marshall McLuhan evidently didn't exercise much during his residence, and mayhaps other attentions he wasn't adequately aware of having. . .) ...

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Panel Discussion: "Trouble in the Global Village"

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pp. 227-268

Leslie Shade: Welcome to this session, "Trouble in the Global Village." My name is Leslie Shade, and I am a professor here in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Ottawa. For this panel, we have three esteemed members who are going to address the various problems in the "Global Village." ...


E-ISBN-13: 9780776615431
E-ISBN-10: 0776615432
Print-ISBN-13: 9780776605722
Print-ISBN-10: 0776605720

Page Count: 250
Publication Year: 2004

Series Title: Reappraisals: Canadian Writers