Herbert Marshall McLuhan (July 21, 1911 – December 31, 1980)
In 1980, Canadian communications theorist and writer Marshall McLuhan died at age 69. His revolutionary and often misunderstood communications theories have been compared to the works of Darwin and Freud for their universal importance. McLuhan established worldwide recognition in 1964 for his book “Understanding Media,” which studied the changes in human perception caused by electronic communications. He coined the phrase “the medium is the message.” (Surce: http://tinyurl.com/lhrxqur )
[Marshall McLuhan's] tombstone is a modest flat copper plate in a quiet part of Holy Cross Cemetery in Thornhill, Ontario – often almost covered by weeds and grass. But it did not obscure his big lettering: “The truth shall make you free.” If McLuhan’s grave was in any other part of the world there would be tour buses driving up daily to visit the burial site of this worldwide famous icon and seer. His funeral Mass was celebrated on a cold winter day in January 1981, at Holy Rosary Church in Toronto, which acknowledged his Scottish heritage, had one bagpiper pipe his body into the church and out afterwards before a good sized crowd of worshippers. (Source: http://tinyurl.com/7suqkru )
“You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” – John 8:32
Addendum: Michael McLuhan reports that his father’s memorial marker was designed by Romanian-Canadian sculptor Sorel Etrog, who was a friend & collaborator of Marshall McLuhan. On Sorel Etrog and his relationship with Marshall McLuhan, see the following posting on this blog: http://tinyurl.com/qdf7q8l .
An experimental 1967 collaboration between the originator of media analysis and a major designer has new meaning today
By Tiffany Lambert, Designers & Books December 24, 2013
“When this circuit learns your job, what are you going to do?”
“The wheel is an extension of the foot, the book is an extension of the eye, clothing an extension of the skin, electric circuitry an extension of the central nervous system.”
“The extension of any one sense alters the way we think and act—the way we perceive the world.”
“The ear favors no particular point of view. We simply are not equipped with earlids.”
Quotes can be found on pages 20, 40, 41, and 111, respectively.“This ‘experimental’ paperback became a best seller and helped popularize McLuhan’s ideas,” says Designers & Books contributor Warren Lehrer (pp. 34–37)
Media philosopher Marshall McLuhan (1939–80) sought to explain the effects of different electronic media, which he saw as having a larger influence on shaping culture than the information being communicated by that media. In The Medium is the Massage (Gingko Press, 2001, Penguin Books, 2008)—originally published in 1967 by Bantam—McLuhan collaborated with the groundbreaking graphic designer Quentin Fiore to distill the theorist’s provocative, complex ideas into a powerful image-driven experience for the general reader.
“This small paperback is the result of a typo at the printing house that McLuhan embraced and used to create a ‘reader’s digest’ version of hisThe Medium is the Message,” says Designers & Books contributor Carola Zwick, of the Berlin-based Studio 7.5. “It uses visual means to support his idea that human artifacts serve as extensions of the human body and brain.” Pentagram’s Abbott Miller, who also includes the book on his list for Designers & Books, calls The Medium is the Massage “an exceptional case study of a partnership between a public intellectual and a great designer.” Contributor and “visual literature” specialist Warren Lehrer comments: “The book visualized how technologies from the wheel to the telephone are extensions of our bodies and create a sense of comfort as well as anxiety. Some pages were printed backward and were meant to be read in a mirror; others were left completely blank.” Source: Designers & Books, http://tinyurl.com/pzhew46
Photos and illustrations are used alongside excerpts from McLuhan’s original text (pp. 120–121)
Quentin Fiore is one of America’s most distinguished graphic designers and perhaps the most successful of all McLuhan collaborators.
Jerome Agel has written and produced more than fifty books, including original visual interpretations of Marshall McLuhan’s and Buckminster Fuller’s work.
Some say that ever ‘gainst that season comes
Wherein our Saviour’s birth is celebrated,
This bird of dawning singeth all night long;
And then, they say, no spirit dare stir abroad,
The nights are wholesome, then no planets strike,
No fairy takes, nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallow’d and so gracious is the time.
- Marcellus to Horatio and Bernardo, after seeing the Ghost: (Hamlet, I, i)
Bird of Dawning, No. 1 by Peter Stilwell - http://tinyurl.com/mr5f8at
The McLuhan bunch in the ’60s, from the top: Elizabeth, Michael, Stephanie, Eric, Teri, supermom Corinne and McLuhan (Image: Henri Dauman/Life Magazine)
From “McLuhan For Beginners” by Terrence GordonAn Ear for an Eye
Marcel Duchamp. Double exposure. Photographer unknown.
A video introduction by Dr. Anthony Collamati to themes in Chapter 1 and Chapter 3 of Marshall McLuhan’s Understanding Media. The video is a companion piece for discussions in Media Theory and Culture–a course in Alma College’s New Media Studies program. ( Published on YouTube, Jan 17, 2013)
2014 is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man (first published in hard cover by McGraw-Hill in 1964 and Signet Paperback in 1966).
Hardcover edition, 1964
Published on November 25th, 2013
- by Mark Bou Mansour
Do new media technologies just carry on the developments of print media? Or are new currents underway today? Marshal McLuhan argues the latter. McLuhan was a Canadian philosopher, media guru and intellectual celebrity …. McLuhan is known for coining the phrase “the medium is the message”, popularizing the notion of “the global village”, and for pretty much revolutionizing the way we look at media’s role in shaping human societies. McLuhan, who is credited with quotes such as “diaper spelled backwards is repaid. Think about it” and “I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say”, is also credited with predicting the internet thirty years before its commercialization.
In his game-changing book The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man, which we don’t have space be give justice here, McLuhan studies the way technology for documenting and communicating has influenced human cognition and societal structures throughout history from pre-alphabetic human tribes to the electronic age. He argues that electronic media, through its instantaneous movement of information across the world, has shrunk the globe, bringing all matters of social and political function under our awareness and so heightening our sense of responsibility. Electronic media has rendered the world into a “global village”, argues McLuhan, and the next medium –which we can say today is digital media- would continue that process by extending our consciousness across the globe.
McLuhan’s logic works well in describing our world today; we are not only conscious of events happening across the world, we react to them as well. When natural disaster strikes a country, world-wide relief efforts respond. When human rights are violated by a state, demonstrations are held at that state’s embassies in other countries. And when an internet craze comes along, the world Harlem shakes, then looks back in shame wondering where it all went wrong. In such a world, the horrors of a world war and mass genocide cannot go without resistance. The world becomes a tribe beating to the same drum, and although disagreements and conflicts exist, the disassociation, alienation, fear and hatred of people from other countries needed for a full-out global war cannot foster in a world interconnected by the internet.
At this point we can see what appears as a trajectory from print media to digital media. Print media consolidated geographic areas into imagined communities via language and by fostering a perception of simultaneous movement through linear time. Digital media shrinks and consolidates even larger geographic areas, arguably the whole world, via the language of the internet, simultaneity of online activity, and instantaneous sharing of information and context. The internet, however, goes beyond this. The reason McLuhan argues that new currents are underway is because he holds that electronic and digital media stem off from the trajectory initiated by print media and the book. This new direction is the major development challenging nationalism.
The wide-spread use of the book as a medium following the rise of the printing press, argues McLuhan, shaped human cognition into a visual-linear mode of thinking. Ideas and stories were communicated line by line. This had the effect of externalizing thought into a visible organized structure ordered by grammatical rules and conventions, thus making thought and cognition more objectively critiqueable, calculable, and logically linear. By emphasizing the visual and calculable, the sensuous and emotional become under emphasized and discredited as subjective. Human cognition becomes mechanical. Thus, McLuhan explains, print technology made possible the trends of the modern period such as capitalism, democracy, individualism, and, surprise surprise, nationalism. Thus, the development of linearity in human experience and perception which we have been finding recurrent in our examination so far –linearity in relationships, in time, and now in cognition- and which made possible the notions of competition, progress, and the nation, can be traced back to the proliferation of the printing press. And it is this linearity, McLuhan contends, which is being challenged by the proliferation of electronic and digital media.
The wide-spread use of electronic media as a medium induces a step away from linear cognition. The constant bombardment of stimuli we are exposed to whether on our computers, phones, or tablets not only bring about a revitalizing of the audio-oral but also train us in web-like cognition with multi-tasking awareness. While adults criticize youngsters today for short-attention spans and lack of concentrated focus, what goes unnoticed are youngsters capacities to carry out several activities at once –chatting on several social services, listening to playlists, downloading content, working on a school assignment, following the latest tweets, and texting from their phones. Whereas the book required the reader to focus her attention from line to line, the internet requires the user to branch out her concentration like an inter-linked web.
The internet, thus, challenges nationalism not just by expanding communities beyond borders, but – just as the shift from religious community to the nation involved a metaphysical shift- by shifting experience to non-linearity. As linearity is undermined so are notions of nationalism, national or ideological historical progress, and ultimately the notion of a global war as socio-politico-economic advancement. (Read the rest here: http://tinyurl.com/mh6zywk )
Ryerson University, in the midst of Toronto
The Fifteenth Annual Convention of the Media Ecology Association
Confronting Technopoly: Creativity & the Creative Industries in Global Perspective
Final Call For Papers – Submission deadline: January 15, 2014
Thursday 19th – Sunday June 22, 2014 - Ryerson University - Toronto, Canada
Convention Coordinator: Phil Rose (firstname.lastname@example.org)
To submit go to: https://www.easychair.org/account/signin.cgi?conf=mea2014
For submission enquiries contact: Sheena Hyndman (email@example.com)
Keynote Speaker: Ronald J. Deibert, University of Toronto
Confirmed Participants: Eric McLuhan, Paul Heyer, William Buxton, Ellen Rose, Lance Strate, Rick Salutin, Eric Peterson, Elena Lamberti, Robert K. Logan, David Cayley, Janine Marchessault, William Vanderburg, Paolo Granata, Corey Anton, Nadia Delicata
The ‘Toronto School of Communication’ represents one of the main developmental pillars of the media ecology perspective. And, in 2014, Ryerson University will host the Media Ecology Association’s 15th Annual Convention – the first to be held in the city of Toronto. The relationship between Marshall McLuhan and the former ‘Ryerson Institute of Technology’ began in the early 1950s, and the latter was later to provide the venue where McLuhan accomplished much of the work for his “Project in Understanding New Media” (1960). Completed for the United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, this work later formed the basis for his internationally renowned book Understanding Media (1964). A text in which McLuhan articulates his sense of the socio-cultural role that creativity and ‘integral awareness’ must play for future human survival, the 50th anniversary of its first publication coincides with our convention, which invites papers, panels, creative projects, and other proposals presenting research and/or exploring topics and ideas related to the convention theme.
Neil Postman’s neologism ‘Technopoly’ – roughly what Jacques Ellul calls ‘La Technique’ and what McLuhan refers to as ‘technological trauma’ – is a rich concept. Denoting the digital age cultural conditions characterised by elements such as scientific management, scientism, information overload, and other forms of socio-technical conflict, it also includes the contemporary moral crisis associated with ‘autonomous technology’, corporatism, Pentagon capitalism, totalitarian technocracy, and American global hegemony. “Nature and history seem to have agreed to designate us in Canada for a corporate, artistic role,” McLuhan wrote in the late 1970s.
“As the U.S.A. becomes a world environment through its resources, technology, and enterprises, Canada takes on the function of making that world environment perceptible to those who occupy it”. In the Canadian spirit, then, let us collectively probe the phenomenon of Technopoly in relation to any topics, but with particular interest in how creativity and the cultural or creative industries might evolve in relation to it, and possibly serve to neutralise its toxic effects. Though priority will be given to submissions that touch upon or reflect the conference theme, all abstracts for papers, panel proposal submissions, etc. that address media ecological topics are welcome. No more than two submissions per author will be accepted, and authors who wish to be considered for the Top Paper or Top Student Paper awards should submit complete manuscripts and indicate the award for which they are applying.
The convention site – located in the heart of Toronto’s downtown core – is easily accessed by both ground and air transportation, and proximate to most of the city’s major attractions. Those visiting Toronto from afar may also appreciate visiting nearby Niagara Falls at the Canada/U.S. border – an environment inscribed by some as one of the ‘seven wonders of the world’.
Guidelines for Submission
For Manuscripts: for MEA award submissions
1. Manuscripts should be 4,000-6,000 words (approximately 15 to 25 double-spaced pages)
2. Include a cover page (or e-submission page) with your academic or professional affiliation and other contact information.
3. Include a 150 words abstract, with the title. Use APA, MLA or Chicago style.
For Paper and Panel Proposals:
1. Include title, 250 words abstract, and contact information with your proposal.
2. Outline, as relevant, how your paper or panel will fit with the convention theme.
For more on the Media Ecology Association, visit www.media-ecology.org.
Le 15e congrès annuel de la *Media Ecology Association
À l’encontre de la technopolie : la créativité et les industries de création dans une optique planétaire
Dernier appel à communications
Critères de soumission : *Échéance : le 15er janvier 2014
Du 19 au 22 juin 2014
Université Ryerson – Toronto, Canada
Organisateur du congrès : Phil Rose (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Pour soumettre aller à: https://www.easychair.org/account/signin.cgi?conf=mea2014
Pour la soumission renseignement, s’addresser Sheena Hyndman: (email@example.com)
Conférencier : Ronald J. Deibert
Participants Confirmé:*Eric McLuhan, Paul Heyer, William Buxton, Ellen Rose, Lance Strate, Rick Salutin, Eric Peterson, Elena Lamberti, Robert K. Logan, David Cayley, Janine Marchessault, William Vanderburg, Paolo Granata, Corey Anton, Nadia Delicata
La Toronto School of Communication est l’un des principaux piliers du développement de l’écologie des médias. En 2014, l’Université Ryerson accueillera notre 15e congrès annuel, le tout premier à se tenir à Toronto. Les relations de Marshall McLuhan et de l’ancien Ryerson Institute of Technology ont commencé au début des années 50. C’est là où, plus tard, McLuhan effectuera une grande partie de ses travaux pour le « Project in Understanding New Media » (1960). Réalisé pour le compte du U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, ce projet constituera plus tard la base de son livre de renommée internationale, « Pour comprendre les médias » (1964). Dans les pages de ce volume, McLuhan exprime son interprétation du rôle socioculturel que doivent jouer la créativité et la « sensibilisation intégrale » dans la survie future de la race humaine.
Notre congrès coïncidera avec le 50eanniversaire de la première publication de cet ouvrage.
La « technopolie », néologisme inventé par Neil Postman, – une approximation de la thèse de « La technique » postulée par Jacques Ellul et de l’idée du « traumatisme technologique » avancée par Marshall McLuhan – est un concept riche. Encapsulant les conditions culturelles de l’ère numérique, caractérisée par des éléments tels que la gestion scientifique, le scientisme, la surcharge d’information et d’autres formes de conflit sociotechnique, la technopolie comprend aussi la crise morale contemporaine associée à la « technologie autonome », au capitalisme du Pentagone, à la technocratie totalitaire et à l’hégémonie mondiale des États-Unis. « La nature et l’histoire semblent s’être entendues pour nous accorder, au Canada, un rôle artistique corporatif, écrira McLuhan vers la fin des années 70. Tandis que les États-Unis deviennent un environnement mondial par le biais de leurs ressources, de leur technologie et de leurs entreprises, le Canada a pour fonction de rendre cet environnement mondial perceptible à ceux qui l’occupent. » Creusons ensemble, dans cet esprit canadien, le phénomène de la technopolie en lien avec tous les sujets, en accordant une attention particulière à l’évolution possible du processus créatif et des industries culturelles ou de création par rapport à la technopolie et à leur potentiel de neutralisation des effets nocifs de celle-ci.
Les organisateurs du congrès donneront priorité aux communications s’inscrivant dans le thème du congrès. Nous invitons cependant tout résumé de communication, toute proposition de panel, etc., sur les thèmes de l’écologie des médias. Les auteurs souhaitant soumettre un manuscrit pour les prix « Top Paper » ou « Top Student Paper » doivent indiquer le prix visé.
Le congrès se déroulera au cœur du centre-ville de Toronto. Ceux et celles qui viendront de loin voudront peut-être en profiter pour aller explorer les chutes du Niagara, à la frontière canado-américaine – un lieu parfois décrit comme l’une des sept merveilles du monde.
Manuscrits : soumissions mises en considération pour les prix MEA
1. Les manuscrits doivent faire de 4 000 à 6 000 mots (de 15 à 20 pages à interligne double).
2. La page frontispice doit inclure votre affiliation académique ou professionnelle et vos coordonnées.
3. Fournir un résumé de 150 mots et indiquer le titre. Suivre le style APA, MLA ou Chicago.
Communications et panels
1. Fournir le titre, un aperçu de 250 mots et vos coordonnées.
2. Indiquer, le cas échéant, comment votre communication ou panel s’inscrit dans le thème du congrès.
3. Les communications et les résumés en français sont acceptés.
Pour de plus amples renseignements sur la Media Ecology Association, visitez notre site Web au www.media-ecology.org
Interdisciplinary Conference: Celebrating the Thought of Walter Ong, S.J., Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA, USA
‘Technology, Rhetoric, and Cultural Change: Walter J. Ong, S. J. in the Age of Google, Facebook, and Twitter’
Gonzaga University, Spokane, Washington, USA – February 7-8, 2014
Gonzaga University will host an interdisciplinary conference Feb. 7-8 celebrating the work of Jesuit scholar and teacher Walter J. Ong, considered among the foremost theorists of rhetoric in the 20th century. The conference is titled, “Technology, Rhetoric, and Cultural Change: Walter J. Ong, S. J. in the Age of Google, Facebook, and Twitter.”
A student of Marshall McLuhan and Perry Miller, Father Ong’s dissertation on the importance of Peter Ramus, a 16th century logician who developed a deeply influential pedagogy, brought him an international audience. Over the course of his long career, Ong published several books and hundreds of essays, most arguing that the technology of human communication is reflected, however indirectly, in human consciousness.
This conference will celebrate Fr. Ong’s legacy and the tradition of Jesuit scholarship. As enthusiasts of new media daily claim its transformative status, the conference will explore – using the lens of Walter Ong’s scholarship – these powerful new communication tools and the emerging world they promise.
Gonzaga Academic Vice President Patricia O’Connor Killen will offer a welcome at 5 p.m., Feb. 7, followed by a keynote lecture by English Professor Sara van den Berg, of St. Louis University, who will discuss “The State of Ong Scholarship.” Offering the concluding keynote lectures on Feb. 8 at 3:15 p.m. will be Regis University religious studies Professor Randolph Lumpp, who will discuss “Going Global with Walter Ong: The Society and the Site,” followed by a lecture from Gonzaga communication Professor John Caputo will discuss “Walter Ong: How The Seamless Web of Technology is Restructuring Consciousness.” The conference, to be held in the Jepson Center for the School of Business Administration (click for campus map), features scholars from throughout the world who will present lectures on the following themes: Ong and Writing/Literature; Orality; Language Studies; and Ong and Philosophy. Click the following link to view a list of conference participants. To register online for the conference, visit the following website.
Known for his work in Renaissance literature, intellectual history, and the evolution of consciousness, Fr. Ong authored more than 450 publications and the perennially popular “Orality and Literacy,” which was translated into a dozen languages, both European and Asian. A Saint Louis University Professor Emeritus, the William E. Haren Professor Emeritus of English, and Professor Emeritus of Humanities in Psychiatry, Fr. Ong’s scholarship has influenced numerous fields and countless scholars. He gave lecture tours in Western Africa, Japan, and across Europe.
Fr. Ong’s work was deeply interdisciplinary. His scholarship was difficult to classify by traditional disciplines. His students labeled his courses not English but “Ong-lish” for his vast treatment of topics in any class. He explained in a letter that he did his graduate work in English because “English seemed intellectually and culturally roomier and more open than other subjects. It could encompass what they did and more – could open the way into almost anything.”
The Walter J. Ong, S.J., Center for Language, Media and Culture at St. Louis University is an academic focal point that promotes interdisciplinary research in the humanities.
Fr. Ong was active until the end of his life. His last article, “Digitization Ancient and Modern: Beginnings of Writing and Today’s Computers,” published in 1998, won the Media Ecology Association’s Walter Benjamin Award for Outstanding Article in the Field of Media Ecology in 2000. He died in 2003.
For more information, please visit the conference website or contact Megan Taylor<mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org> via email or at (509) 313-3567. Media seeking more information should contact Professor Caputo<mailto: email@example.com> via email or at (509) 313-6656 or Peter Tormey<mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org> in Gonzaga University News Service via email or at (509) 313-6132.
See the following previous postings on this blog on:-
Walter Ong & Marshall McLuhan @ Saint Louis University, http://tinyurl.com/78joo4c
More on Walter Ong & Marshall McLuhan, http://tinyurl.com/kufutxo
The 100th Anniversary of Walter J. Ong’s Birth (1912-2003), http://tinyurl.com/qg2ra6t
Marshall McLuhan (center) & Father Walter Ong, SJ (right, seated) at SLU
Eileen G. Mangubat CDN FILE PHOTO
Journalism in time of calamity
If journalism is done well, it empowers communities, saves lives, dispels dangerous rumors, cultivates compassion and keeps hope alive.
These are some roles of the media in covering disasters, according to publisher Eileen G. Mangubat in her inaugural lecture at the annual Marshall McLuhan Forum on Responsible Journalism held at the Marcelo B. Fernan Cebu Press Center Theater in Cebu City.
Mangubat, who is also acting editor in chief of Cebu Daily News, was conferred the 2013 Marshall McLuhan Fellowship by the Canadian Embassy yesterday. Newly installed Canadian Ambassador to the Philippines Neil Reeder handed the award to Mangubat.
“I’m very pleased to be here today and to present this McLuhan award to Eileen, to recognize her contribution to journalism in this country and for all the work she has done to promote the values of good faith and responsible journalism that has no boundaries and borders,” Reeder said.
Mangubat is the first Cebuano and the third community journalist to be named a McLuhan Fellow. The other two were Diosa Labiste of Iloilo City in 2010 and MindaNews editor Carol Arguilles of Davao City in 2011.
As part of the fellowship, Mangubat will travel to Canada in February for a two-week study and speaking tour.
Learning from disasters
Mangubat described 10 roles of the media ranging from providing a “reality check” to rallying the community behind relief efforts and “zapping rumors”.
“Community journalists know the power of local stories and images to connect with the various publics that we reach. The work keeps us grounded,” she said in her presentation “Journalism in the Time of Yolanda: The Evolving Role of the Media in Covering Disasters.”
She also told an audience of mostly mass communication students that journalism was “not just a job, but a vocation” carried out for public service.
“While everyone else is hunkering down, finding a warm, dry place to wait out the storm, you (journalists) are being sent to the front lines to be a witness of this awful occurrence. And the mission extends beyond that, to telling the story of how people are more than victims,” she said.
With back-to-back disasters of the Oct. 15 Bohol-Cebu earthquake and supertyphoon Yolanda in Nov. 8, she said it made her see more clearly the importance of the news media “not just in showing the scope of damage – as the traditional bearer of bad news – but in pushing the basic job of truth telling in other roles to achieve a broader sense of public interest, “ she said.
She cited as an example the prime attention given to the private sector’s support of the #BangonSugBohol”, a unified donation drive for calamity victims of the earthquake and supertyphoon Yolanda.
“What the media did was to help energize it by covering it as a news story.”
While it’s important to cover the big story in a calamity, “Community newspapers use another lens to focus on small but significant details,” such as stories of survivors which offer lessons in “perseverance, love of family, and sacrifice,” she added.
“Keep hope alive; cultivate compassion. These are two roles the media doesn’t do often enough. Or sometimes, we do it badly by trivializing what should be an exercise of human dignity,” she said.
Mangubat, who has been a journalist for 30 years, said the first job of the media in a calamity is to report the facts of damage and loss as well as to give a sense of why it happened.
“The journalist is an observer who tells it as it is. This also means not confusing one’s personal preferences with the work at hand,” she said.
Mangubat cited as an example broadcaster Korina Sanchez’s remark dismissing CNN reporter Anderson Cooper as not knowing what he was talking about in reporting about the lack of government leadership in the devastation in Tacloban City right after supertyphoon Yolanda.
As the wife of Secretary Mar Roxas, she should have avoided to comment.
“All Cooper had to do was show his tapes. Korina the broadcaster had violated the rule of conflict of interest and damaged her own credibility because she was never in Tacloban,” she added.
Mangubat, who finished a bachelor’s degree in journalism at the University of the Philippines in Diliman, admitted that the media committed lapses.
“There are many things we could have done better,” Mangubat said. She added that while the media put out public advisories and typhoon warnings days before Yolanda hit, nobody explained the full threat of a storm surge.
“What happened in Yolanda? A fatal lapse in communication. No one really understood what a ‘storm surge’ meant. In painful hindsight, the choice of term alone could have saved thousands of lives,” Mangubat said.
“We didn’t see that (storm surge) as the number one threat, even President Aquino. I looked up our raw reports in the Pagasa announcements and even the President’s national TV address. The storm surge advisory was somewhere buried in the body. It didn’t make any impact,” she aded.
Another media role she suggested was to “partner with peers”.
She cited the joint project of Cebu’s three newspapers to set up the #Relieftracker, a database to monitor where relief donations were sent in Cebu.
“In the community press, we compete fiercely for readership. But in this calamity of Yolanda, we found a common cause.”
On the question of whether it’s the role of a news organization to raise funds for calamity victims, she said that “if an organization has the heart and the means to do these efforts with transparency and good bookkeeping, by all means, the help is welcome. But it should be driven by a real spirit of service, not corporate ego,” she said.
Skyline of Metro Cebu
Canadian-Indian artist Mansaram’s films, “Rear View Mirror”, “Intersect” and “Devi Stuffed Goat and Pink Cloth” were screened at Experimenta 2013, India’s first and only independent festival celebrating moving image art. Presented in Bangalore, India, this groundbreaking festival showcased over 50 films and videos from across the world, hosted live experimental music performances, installations, and talks over 5 days at the Max Mueller Bhavan and Badami House. Curated by Shai Heredia, Mansaram’s featured work captures elements of Marshall McLuhan’s prophetic ideas that continue to define and clarify our media-saturated world.
1st December| Sunday | 5:30pm | 30mins | MMB
ARTIST PROFILE – PANCHAL MANSARAM
Curated by Shai Heredia
Panchal Mansaram was born in 1934 in Mount Abu, Rajasthan. In 1966, Mansaram immigrated to Canada, where he met Marshall Mcluhan and A.V. Isaacs. In this series of films and videos Mansaram’s work captures elements of McLuhan’s prophetic ideas that continue to define and clarify our media-saturated world.
1. ‘Rear View Mirror’ Canada/India 1966-2011 16mm on video sound 13 min
“I had the privilege of meeting Marshall McLuhan, soon after arrival in Canada from India. I was already impressed by his ideas through magazines back home. Encouraged by him I did a mixed media concert at the Isaacs Gallery in Toronto, titled East West Intersect, in 67. Later I started doing a series of paintings titled Rear View Mirror in early 70’s, the title borrowed from McLuhan. I was inspired to do a film on the same subject. It was shown in India and Canada. In 2011, I had reedited this film as part of a show at Ed Video media art Centre in Guelph. As in the case of ‘Rear View Mirror’ we are constantly creating our past, while living in the present. Past appears in present in various forms; paintings, drawings, photos, memories, words, sculptures, films. I have woven some of those remnants thru this medium.” - P. M.
Descriptions of Mansaram’s other two films can be found in the full Experimenta 2013 programe (pdf): http://tinyurl.com/mga6uxx
Marshall McLuhan and P. Mansaram at the opening for Mansaram’s ‘Rear View Mirror’ exhibition at the Picture Loan Gallery in Toronto, 1974.
A publisher of a Cebu-based newspaper has been chosen to be the 2013 Marshall McLuhan Fellow by the Embassy of Canada.A statement from the Canadian Embassy in Manila on Monday said veteran journalist Eileen G. Mangubat is “recognized for her noteworthy efforts to steer and maintain an independent and professional community press in Cebu.”
Mangubat, publisher and acting editor-in-chief of Cebu Daily News, is the third community journalist to receive the McLuhan Fellowship, the Canadian Embassy said.
The Marshall McLuhan Fellowship, named after the world-renowned Canadian communication scholar, is the Embassy of Canada’s flagship media advocacy initiative. Launched in 1997 to encourage responsible journalism in the Philippines, the Fellowship underlines Canada’s belief that strong media is essential to a free and democratic society.
The program, with financial support from Sun Life of Canada, provides the winner with a study tour to Canada. This will be an opportunity to interact with media counterparts and to discuss current governance issues with Canadian government officials and members of civil society. The winner will also have the chance to sit as a fellow at the McLuhan Institute in Toronto.
Canada’s Ambassador to the Philippines Neil Reeder will present the award to Mangubat on Tuesday, December 3, 9 a.m., at her inaugural lecture at the Marcelo B. Fernan Press Center in Lahug, Cebu City. Admission to the lecture is free. — KBK, GMA News
Dr. David R. Olson
David R. Olson (born in 1935) is one of the most eminent proponents of Literacy Theory and was a member of the Toronto school of communication, and at one time a director of McLuhan Program in Culture and Technology. Influenced by Jack Goody’s work, he studied with Jerome Bruner, and has been particulary interested, in many books including A world on paper, by the consequences in thinking and cognition implied by the emerging of writing and reading. He combines cognitive psychology with educational theory, history of literacy and media anthropology. His research into writing and literacy began with the seminal article From utterance to text: the bias of language in speech and writing (1977), in which he analyzed text, the most advanced form of literacy, as a decontextualized and autonomous kind of discourse. His further explorations of the subject were summed up in his book The World on Paper: The Conceptual and Cognitive Implications of Writing and Reading (1994). The book, being the important supplement to Literacy Theory, develops the thesis that text as it is understood was the result of the long cultural evolution, which formed the cognitive bases for theoretical and scientific thought, and laid the foundations for subjectivity in modern understanding.
David Olson published also: Psychological Theory and Educational Reform: How School Remakes Mind and Society (2003), Jerome Bruner: Cognitive Revolution in Educational Theory (2007), and, as co-editor and co-author, Developing Theories of Mind (1990), Literacy and Orality (1991), Modes of Thought: Explorations in Culture and Cognition (1996), The Making of Literate Societies (2001), Literacy, Narrative and Culture (2002), The Cambridge Handbook of Literacy (2009). (Edited source: http://tinyurl.com/l2qptfu )
Here is a quote by David Olson, from a 2009 interview. The full interview can be found by following the link after the quote:
“It is difficult to anticipate the cultural importance of a new technology. Clearly digitalization has opened up new and rapid modes of communication, linking people in new ways within existing communities and creating new ones– chat groups and so on. However, historically and culturally, the big transformations reflected the invention of writing systems, whatever their form, and the invention of print. The former was important because it gave permanence to the word, allowing and inviting people to look more carefully at language itself. So we got the invention of logic and more specialized forms of discourse including “scholarly” language. The second, printing, was important in that it altered readership dramatically, allowing everyone, or almost everyone, to become a participant in the discourse. As we say, it democratized literacy. So, what does digitalization add? Less to literacy, I suspect, than to economics, manufacturing, social planning (airline ticket bookings and the like). Literacy, as a matter of extending the uses of language, so far as I can tell, has not changed much” (Interview, 2009 full interview at http://skhole.fr/node/208 ).
“Conceptually, I am a child at at least a step-child of Jerome Bruner, Jack Goody, Marshall McLuhan and Eric Havelock.” - Preface to The World on Paper (1994)
This is an excerpt from a copyright article of the same title published by me, Alex Kuskis, in (2011) Explorations in Media Ecology, 10(3&4), pp. 313-333. This is Part 5 and additional excerpts from this essay will be published in future postings.
3. The Probe as Pedagogy
Again, that’s terminology used by the author of this essay, not McLuhan, but the phrase applies McLuhan’s idea of an intellectual probe to education and supports his endorsement of discovery learning, since that’s what probes are meant to do – discover something new. The Book of Probes defines the probe as: “… a means or method of perceiving. It comes from the world of conversation & dialogue … Like conversation, the verbal probe is discontinuous, nonlinear; it tackles things from many angles at once” (McLuhan & Carson, 2003, 403). On the need for probing in education, McLuhan wrote:
“Education on all levels has to move from packaging to probing, from the mere conveying of data to the experimental discovering of new dimensions of experience. The search will have to be for patterns of experience and discovery of principles of organization which have universal application, not for facts. … our whole world … has already shifted from data packaging to probing of patterns” (McLuhan, 1966, 41-42).
4. Classroom without Walls
In “The Book of Probes” (2003) McLuhan is quoted as saying that: “The metropolis today is a classroom, the ads are its teachers. The traditional classroom is AN OBSOLETE DETENTION HOME, [his emphasis] a feudal dungeon” (p. 126). McLuhan asserted the need to take learning out of classrooms; hence the 1977 book written in collaboration with Eric McLuhan and Kathryn Hutchon, “City as Classroom”, McLuhan’s only book dedicated exclusively to education. Oddly, it’s intended for classroom use, but many of the assignments are experiential, designed to take students out into the cityscape.
He writes elsewhere: “… the amount of information that is embedded in young minds per minute outside the classroom far exceeds anything that happens inside the classroom in just quantitative terms now” (McLuhan, 1966). Later he expanded the ground for education not just to the city or cities, but rather to the whole world: “The little red schoolhouse is already well on its way toward becoming the little round schoolhouse” (McLuhan & Leonard, 1967). Thus the global village was morphed into the global school, which is a remarkable anticipation of the Internet, perhaps the most powerful learning platform yet devised.
1In his book, Canadian Communication Thought, Robert Babe argues for the recognition of a distinctly Canadian paradigm of communication studies.1Grounding his observations in the scholarship of “ten foundational thinkers” – particularly Dallas Smythe, Harold Innis and Marshall McLuhan – Babe describes ‘Canadian Communication Thought’ as being inherently dialectical, critical, holistic, ontological, oriented towards political economy, and concerned with mediation, power, democracy and dynamic change.2
2Dialectics and critical theory are at the forefront of this Canadian paradigm, representing the country’s unique political and geographic terrain. Its dialectical predispositions stem from several factors including the country’s embrace of British conservatism and a spirit of “collectivity and commonality;” its proximity to the United States and the differences between a “garrison mentality” of “communitarianism” in Canada and a frontier mentality of individualism in the US; and a geographic landscape that engenders both “bleakness” and “imagination.”3 The push and pull between languages (English and French), cultures (a multicultural society with a visible First Nations population), and normative concerns for democracy, equality, and power further underscore a dialectical and critical tradition of hermeneutic inquiry. Accordingly,
…foundational Canadian communication thought emphasizes the importance and the power of the human imagination, and it studies how our imaginations are moulded, or at least influenced, by prevailing institutions, by predominant media of communication, by our stories or myths, by our educational system, and by our place in the world.4
3Proximity to the United States is another contributing factor to this dialectic Canadian identity as: “Canadians are normally immersed in American media, and so are quite aware of American perspectives, even while knowing that these perspectives do not necessarily represent accurately the Canadian situation.”5 In concert, these aforementioned characteristics demarcate the Canadian communication research and scholarly experience and tradition as different and separate from that of the United States. Communications research in America (according to Babe) grew out of a tradition of studying ‘transmission;’ what Harold Lasswell called “administrative research,” and exhibited an attitude that eschewed critical interrogation of the media industries which generate huge sums of individual and corporate capital in the country.6 In countenance to the United States, as Babe further observes, “for Canadians, democracy in part means resistance to hegemonic incursions from outside the country so of course Canadian scholarship, even in the mainstream, is more critical.”7
- 1 Robert E. Babe,Canadian Communication Thought: Ten Foundational Writers(Toronto: University of To (…)
- 2 Hamilton (2010) makes the important rebuttal that we must be careful not to take such claims at fac (…)
- 3 Babe, Canadian Communication Thought, Chapter 1.
- 4 Babe, Canadian Communication Thought, 32.
- 5 Robert E. Babe, “Innis and the Emergence of Canadian Communication/Media Studies,” Global Media Jou (…)
- 6 Babe, “Innis and the Emergence of Canadian Communication/Media Studies,” 19.
- 7 Babe, “Innis and the Emergence of Canadian Communication/Media Studies,” 19.
Source http://inmedia.revues.org/696 (the rest of this article is a review of the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Communications Association (CCA) held in Victoria, British Columbia, in June 2013.)
“I perceive communication to be the value of Canada, the highest good of a state where understanding and misunderstanding, conciliatory conversation and vitriol, where constant negotiation and the limits of language, coexist. We have had to learn how to contact one another over an enormous land space, across five and a half time zones, in what was once a wilderness of scattered settlements, in what is now a sprawl of suburban edge cities and satellite towns. Technology forges connections and disconnections here.” - Bruce Powe, “a tremendous Canada of light” (1993), revised & republished as “ Towards a Canada of Light” (2006)
Half a century ago, Canadian media philosopher Marshall McLuhan coined the term “global village” to describe the inevitable social transformation brought on by new forms of electronic communications. Hitched to satellites whirring through outer space, these technologies, he predicted, would create unities in a world of opposing cultural traditions, religious philosophies, and political ideologies.
The funeral of John F. Kennedy on Nov. 25, 1963, showed how that could be done. It was the first globally significant event to be globally televised. Dignitaries from around the world, on learning of the assassination, had rushed to America’s capital city on intercontinental jet aeroplanes, a relatively new travel technology — only about five years old — that, together with satellite telecommunications, had begun reorganising humankind in McLuhan’s terms. 92 nations were represented at the funeral by 220 high-ranking officials of what appeared to be every possible racial and ethnic configuration. Dressed in their finest formal attire, military or otherwise, medals bristling from their chests, the leaders (almost all of them male) marched side by side in silent dignity behind the horse-drawn caisson bearing the coffin of their slain counterpart.
If the true stars of this hours-long, commercially uninterrupted, live TV broadcast were the president’s family — his handsome brothers, his adorable children, and, most of all, his magnificent widow — these assembled world leaders were more than simply a cast of extras. They were as essential to the larger meaning of that day as the neoclassical government buildings that lined the funeral route.
We can deconstruct their presence in this city and beneath those buildings as a sort of latter-day ancient Roman procession, in which all nations come to pay tribute. Those who don’t risk imperial wrath.
But, from another perspective, the mixture of races and faces among the official mourners may well have inspired onlookers with a sense of hope — justified or not — for a new internationalism, multiculturalism, and global justice.
Surely the most famous image of all from the Kennedy funeral is one that has had considerable staying power. It shows the president’s three-year-old son John Jr. — known affectionately as John John — clutching at his mother with one hand while raising the other to salute his fallen father, whose flag-draped coffin had been lowered onto the caisson.
Whether shown in a full shot that includes his mother, sister, and uncles, or cropped to show him alone (as presented on the closing page of Life‘s memorial edition, which appeared on newsstands a few days later), that single image probably did as much as anything else that weekend, or, indeed, the entire twentieth century, to pull together McLuhan’s global village. (Source: http://tinyurl.com/nbszxme )
Telstar 1 was launched on top of a Thor-Delta rocket on July 10, 1962. It successfully relayed through space the first television pictures, telephone calls, fax images and provided the first live transatlantic television feed.
Imagery and texts range from microscopic algae to Marshall McLuhan for a dual exhibit that is a dialogue between artifacts, living organisms and systems of inscription. The two artists consider the connection between human evolution and technology.
Sandler, of Ilan Sandler Studio Inc., has made large public sculptures, including Lace Up at the Emera Oval, the School Chair in Dartmouth and the temporary Ursa Major’s Visit for the 2011 Nocturne: Art at Night.
Here Sandler makes giant, life-sized sculptures, like statues, of macro views of microscopic diatoms, which are of ancient origin and are among the most common types of phytoplankton. The statues are digital prints inscribed on glass.
The Left Index, by Sandler, is an amazing, giant macro image of a fingerprint as a sculpture of fragmented steel. Leaf Chair is an aluminum chair printed in a photograph of a magnified autumn leaf. Sandler has us questioning invisible or overlooked genetic and scientific systems in organic and everyday life.
Bean, an artist, writer and NSCAD University photography professor, looks at the history of writing machines in photographs of artifacts like the typewriter, IBM computer card punch and the Enigma machine, invented at the end of the First World War for enciphering and deciphering secret messages.
He examines Marshall McLuhan in the fascinating work, Illuminated Manuscripts, 2010, of motion graphic photomontage on two 55-inch flat-screen monitors. These are mounted to the wall and tilted to look like an open book.
He makes a monument to the typewritten word in eight photographs of enlarged typewritten paper and in photographs of typewritten paper crumpled and tossed aside, an expression of frustration that is familiar to some and totally lost to others.
Bean quotes McLuhan, Gertrude Stein and Heraclitus (“scattered gathers, what has gathered blows apart”) in a look at written symbols and the significance of written communication, apart from his examination of the nature of obsolescence. (Source: http://tinyurl.com/nj4fgmy )
See also http://tinyurl.com/pjhgxj4