Marshall McLuhan: On the Nature of Media

Advertising as a Magical Institution (1952)

读写能力的退化是观众在与新媒介的互动中变得越来越被动的结果

  • Literacy will become as rare as any other specialized skill, because prose was based on the power to translate picturgrams into syntactical gestures and grammatical perspectives – and these are of little interest to the ordinary person today
  • The decline of literary skill is more likely connected with the passivity of modern audiences and the consequent disappearance of conversation
  • The values of civilization would seem to be best created and maintained where there is a great deal of face-to-face discussion

The Comics and Culture (1953)

图像技术的到来并未伴随着与之相称的理解图像能力的提升

  • Culture has during the past four hundred years been, for the most part, book-culture
  • Printing fostered nationalism, … [and] proved to be a great setback for the visual and plastic arts
  • In our own time technology has restored pictorial communication to a public which is completely untrained in pictorial discrimination

Inside the Five Sensorium (1961)

电视作为媒介颠覆了人们感知外界的方式,高强度高密度的信息,视觉和听觉的联动,进一步把观众的“感受力”压制到最低

  • The “low intensity” or “low definition” of retinal image elicits high empathy or participation on the part of the viewer
  • J.C. Carothers: people who live in an oral-aural world know none of the impersonal and detached attitudes of a visual-literate people
  • TV has the power of imposing its own conventions and assumptions on the sensibilities of the viewer. It has the power of translating the Western literate back into the world of non-literate synesthesia

Cybernation and Culture (1966)

三维和图像化的信息只摘选了一个瞬间,并不能成功地描述更普遍的人类情感

  • The story line as a means of organizing data has tended to disappear in many of the arts
  • Sculpture does not enclose space. Neither is it contained in any space. Rather, it models or shapes space
  • Georg Von Bekesy: the world of flat iconic image is a much better guide to the world of sound than three-dimensional and pictorial art [which] selects a single moment in the life of a form
  • The flat iconic image gives an integral bounding line or contour that represents not one moment or one aspect of a form, but offers instead an inclusive integral pattern

Environment: The Future of an Erosion (1967)

当代的技术和媒介像周边环境一样让人不易感知到它的存在,而逝去的媒介则由环境演变成了一种艺术形式

  • Every new technology creates an environment that translates the old or preceding technology into an art form
  • The form of movie which once was environment[al] and invisible has been re-processed into an art form
  • The artists as a maker of anti-environment becomes the enemy in society. He doesn’t seem to be very well adjusted. He does not accept the environment with all its brainwashing functions with any passivity whatever

McLuhan Looks at Fashion (1968)

在远古时代,艺术与人们的生活密切相关,具有明确的功能;而今天的学者更强调各门类艺术的专业划分以及思想独立于生活和外界环境

  • Literate man [refused] to be involved in the world he lived in. He valued the isolated, delimited self, particularly the mind
  • In the tribal world, art belongs to ordinary day-to-day experiences: painting lives on the body, sculpture is something you use or worship, architecture you do yourself, and literature you recite or dance
  • Misako Miyamoto: The audience watches the play and catches the feeling through not only the action and words but also the intervals of the period of the pauses. There is a free creation in each person’s mind … and the audience relates to this situation with free thinking

Foreword to Harold A. Innis, Empire and Communications (1972)

现代科学更强调对因果关系的量化研究,而古希腊时代的自然科学则关注分类而非模式识别

  • Since the Renaissance, science has tended increasingly to quantify cause and effect and to assign as much as possible one effect to one cause
  • Greek physis or “nature” was more a system of classification than of the recognition of dynamic patterns in experience

Do Books Matter (1973)

在当今这样一个信息纷杂,人们无时不被情感和环境因素干扰的年代,书本是仅存为数不多的可以提供客观信息和超然感受的媒介

  • Unlike radio and phonograph, the book does not provide an environment of information that merges with social scenes and dialogue
  • Today, the printed book is the means of detachment and civilized objectivity in a world of profound sensuous involvement
  • Reading and writing were assigned to slaves in ancient Greece, and it was the Romans who promoted the book to a place of dignity

The Brain and the Media: The ‘Western Hemisphere’ (1978)

现代科学和现代社会大多是由左脑支配的,更加注重线性逻辑和用理性指导活动,而非基于全然和同时的感知

  • Non-literate culture are mainly oral/aural, even when they cultivate some non-phonetic form of writing such as Sanskrit
  • The linearity of the left hemisphere is reinforced by a service environment of roads and transportation, and logical or rational activities in legal legislation. The dominance of the right hemisphere, on the other hand, depends upon an environment of a simultaneous resonating character, as is normal in oral societies

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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.