The article deals with the question: What role does the medium of writing play concerning academic texts? If we take into consideration that the medium does not simply carry or record “contents,” as can be characterized by a constitutive operation, the material presence of writing has to be handled as inevitable. When reading the texts of Marshall McLuhan and Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht, we have to face this question not only because in their books, the operations of writing are especially apparent, but also because the texts themselves reflect these aspects in many, though highly different, ways. Taking into account the works that are relevant from these perspectives may show that possible concepts of mediaanthropology can contribute to the understanding how the materiality of writing comes into focus as an active medium of academic — or any kind of — texts. Mediaanthropology, questioning the relation of the human and technology, provides a broader perspective here, as it may point at the medial precededness of the anthropos. The insight that technology has always already been there for human beings throws a different light upon the constitutive operations of writing.


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pp. 19-32
Launched on MUSE
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