The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man – Marshall McLuhan (1962)


The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man is a 1962 book by Marshall McLuhan, in which the author analyzes the effects of mass media, especially the printing press, on European culture and human consciousness. It popularized the term global village, which refers to the idea that mass communication allows a village-like mindset to apply to the entire world; and Gutenberg Galaxy, which we may regard today to refer to the accumulated body of recorded works of human art and knowledge, especially books. McLuhan studies the emergence of what he calls Gutenberg Man, the subject produced by the change of consciousness wrought by the advent of the printed book. Apropos of his axiom, ‘The medium is the message,’ McLuhan argues that technologies are not simply inventions which people employ but are the means by which people are re-invented. The invention of movable type was the decisive moment in the change from a culture in which all the senses partook of a common interplay to a tyranny of the visual. He also argued that the development of the printing press led to the creation of nationalism, dualism, domination of rationalism, automatisation of scientific research, uniformation and standardisation of culture and alienation of individuals. Movable type, with its ability to reproduce texts accurately and swiftly, extended the drive toward homogeneity and repeatability already in evidence in the emergence of perspectival art and the exigencies of the single ‘point of view’. … The global village. In the early 1960s, McLuhan wrote that the visual, individualistic print culture would soon be brought to an end by what he called ‘electronic interdependence’: when electronic media would replace visual culture with aural/oral culture. In this new age, humankind will move from individualism and fragmentation to a collective identity, with a ‘tribal base.’ McLuhan’s coinage for this new social organization is the global village. The term is sometimes described as having negative connotations in The Gutenberg Galaxy, but McLuhan himself was interested in exploring effects, not making value judgments. …”
Wikipedia
CBC: The Gutenberg Galaxy (Video)
[PDF] EPDF: The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man
amazon

About 1960s: Days of Rage

Bill Davis - 1960s: Days of Rage
This entry was posted in Books and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man – Marshall McLuhan (1962)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s