• Appignanesi, Richard. The End of Everything: Postmodernism and the Vanishing of the Human: Lyotard, Haraway, Plato, Heidegger, Habermas, McLuhan . Cambridge: Icon, 2003


  • Boenisch, Peter. “coMedia electrOnica: Performing Intermediality in Contemporary Theatre.” Theatre Research International 28.1 (2003): 34- 45.

“McLuhan explicitly points out that these cognitive features of the `Gutenberg Galaxy’ are not specific characteristics of written manuscripts and printed books alone, but became basic models for thinking and making sense of the world. Consequently, they do not only inform the novel and written drama, but equally their theatrical presentation, and even film, which is so often considered as the groundbreaking aesthetic innovation of recent mediatechnology. McLuhan, in contrast, argues that the cognitive processing of movies – literally moving pictures, sequences of itemized pictures – functions in no other way than reading sequences of itemized letters in a text, a play or a novel. Without being literate, he claims, one is not able to watch a movie either. McLuhan was able to substantiate and illustrate his (at first sight) quite unconventional assertion with scientific evidence. He drew on the research of a London ethnologist describing his fieldwork in a non-literate, oral culture in Africa where he had met a Western sanitary inspector who tried to promote standards of hygiene in these African oral communities by showing them a movie – and, in the end, failed terribly.” (36)


  • Gow, Gordon. “Making Space for McLuhan [review].” Science & Public Policy 30.2 (2003): 142-3.


“In the late 1960s, Canadian scholar Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980) became known as the ‘oracle of the electric age.’ The face of the University of Toronto English professor graced the covers of popular magazines; he turned up on American network television, and even made a cameo appearance in Woody Allen’s film Annie Hall . Television was the powerful new technology of that era, bringing images of the arms race, the space race, the Vietnam War, and extensive social unrest to the living rooms of North America and Europe. At the time, many found McLuhan’s statements about technology to almost mystical; he was a shaman, providing insight to the new media and its effects on the modern world.” (142)


  • Hall, Anthony J. The Bowl with One Spoon vol. 1: The American Empire and the Fourth World (Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2003)


“Anticipating the coming of cyberspace, Marshall McLuhan extended Innis’s pioneering work on communications theory, concentrating on the transformation of a print-based culture into an electronically wired world. This genesis of thought arose in a North American setting where the Indigenous peoples had been brought into the process of globalization primarily through the complex of intercultural negotiations on which the viability of the fur trade depended. As Richard White suggests in The Middle Ground … this history of cultural innovation and experimentation in pluralism represents an approach to the generation of social cohesion very different from the monoculturalism emphasized in neo-liberal forms of globalization.” (298)


  • Harwood, John. “The White Room: Eliot Noyes and the Logic of the Information Age Interior.” Grey Room 12 (Summer 2003): 5-31 

“Marshall McLuhan’s definition of metaphor … is developed in response to ‘the rise of the idea of transportation as communication, and then the transition of the idea from transport to information by means of electricity. The word ‘metaphor’ is from the Greek meta plus pherein , to carry across or transport. … Each form of transport not only carries, but translates and transforms, the sender, the receiver, and the message.’ See McLuhan, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man [New York: McGraw-Hill, 1964] 91. Viewed from this perspective, architecture conceived of as the vehicle (not quite sender, receiver, or message but rather an environmental enclosure for all three) of communication—as it is in the case of IBM and later at Westinghouse—would have been understood as ‘translated and transformed’ by the very process of that communication. [My]use here of ‘pattern recognition’ as a mode of cognition is also drawn from Understanding Media , where McLuhan makes frequent reference to IBM as a company ‘in the business of processing information’ (e.g. 24).


The term ‘counterenvironment’ is also McLuhan’s first deployed in his essay ‘The Invisible Environment: The Future of an Erosion,’ Perspecta 11 (1967): 165-167, and further developed in McLuhan and Harley Parker, Through the Vanishing Point: Space in Poetry and Painting (New York: Harper & Row, 1968), in the essays ‘Sensory Modes’ (1-31) and ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’ (237-291). However, here it has been reappropriated. Rather than accepting his ‘New Critical’ use of the concept to describe a metaphorical, mental ‘landscape’ or ‘space’ generated by the work of art from which the consequences of emerging social and technical relations may be gauged, the term is used here to conceptualize a designed space that is closed off from its surroundings and only linked to like spaces via specific media (e.g., real-time computing). As such, the term is not used entirely disingenuously, since it simply places increased emphasis on the closure implied by the prefix counter- and is consonant with McLuhan’s interest in describing a mode of cognition that offers the potential for the control of external environments via an independently conceived logical system.” (29)


  • Havers, Grant. “The Right-Wing Postmodernism of Marshall McLuhan.”Media, Culture & Society 25.4 (2003): 511-25.


  • Heer, Jeet. “Comparing Intellectual Apples with Oranges.” Canadian Review of American Studies 33.2 (2003): 144-47.

“In looking at the parallel careers of the McLuhan Circle and the New York intellectuals, a few general observations can be made about the prospect of doing comparative intellectual history. First, it is important to consider the unit of comparison. For most comparative historians, the standard unit of comparison is the nation state. Yet in looking at intellectual coteries, it becomes evident that a more useful unit is the city. Centred around universities, publishing houses and journals, most intellectual networks first emerge at the urban, rather than the national, level. Hence intellectual coteries are often named after cities: in addition to the New York intellectuals, there is Chicago sociology, the Frankfurt School of critical theory, and Prague linguistics. Second, the importance of the city as a unit doesn’t erase the need to bring in the nation sate when relevant. As we’ve seen, the relative prestige of the New York intellectuals was related to the fact that they had access to greater resources than Canadians doing similar work because they operated in the United States.” (146)


  • Howell, Richard. Visual Culture. Cambridge, UK: Polity, 2003.

“It was Marshall McLuhan, of course, who in 1964 coined the famous aphorism ‘the medium is the message.’ In the case of the feature film on television, however, it seems that even if McLuhan was not entirely wrong, he did, at least, deliberately overstate his case. To be sure (and this is what McLuhan was getting at), the way we receive a message does, to an extent, influence its meaning. Imagine, for example, the same, simple words ‘I love you’ whispered in your ear, written in the sky, shouted through a megaphone, attached to a bunch of flowers, tapped out as a text message on a cell-phone or appearing in the subject box of an email spreading a computer virus.” (224)


  • Koltay, Tibor. “McLuhan nezetel es az internet vilaga.” Konyvtari Figyelo 13.4 (2003): 843-7.


  • Ludes, Peter. Einfuhrung in die Medienwissenschaft: Entwicklungen und Theorien . Berlin: Schmidt, 2003.


  • Marks, Laura U. “Invisible Media.” New Media: Theories and Practices of Digitextuality . Eds. Anna Everett and John T. Caldwell. N.Y.: Routledge, 2003. 33-45


“[T]he visible, as Marshall McLuhan predicted, is no longer the lively and productive arena of struggle it has been. . [T]he image is merely the selectively unfolded surface of enfolded information. I propose the most interesting and urgent areas of communication to study now are invisible media; invisible, but not immaterial.” (33)


  • Morley, Simon. Writing on the Wall: Writing and Image in Modern Art . Berkeley and Los Angeles: U of California P, 2003.


“But eventually digitalization may well do away with verbal language altogether. The influential philosopher of new media Vilém Flusser, for example, suggested that ‘the easiest way to imagine the future of writing if the present trend toward a culture of techno-images goes on is to imagine culture as a gigantic transcoder from text into image.’ The various media are being drawn together within the complex web of the digital data matrix, and traditional assumptions about the distinctions between the visual and the verbal are being swept away. Cyberspace seems to fulfil the emancipatory promise of Marshall McLuhan, and at least for those who see it as a Utopia – it heralds the dawn of a better era for humanity, one characterized by a society without an oppressively hierarchical structure founded on the rigid linear forms engendered by the centrality of print media, one infused instead with the evanescence of speech and the sensuality of images. This will be a new ‘network culture’ in which the old hierarchies disintegrate is increasingly disseminated and democratized.” (204)


  • Rice, Jeff. “Writing About Cool: Teaching Hypertext as Juxtaposition.”Computers and Composition 20.3 (2003): 221-36.

“Juxtaposition functions as a heuristic, an invention strategy that has been used within the context of media and writing by Walter Benjamin (2002) in the Arcades project, William S. Burroughs and Bryon Gysin (1978) with the cut-up method, and McLuhan (1964) in Understanding Media. These writers used juxtaposition as a rhetorical device for creating associations and emotional responses out of the combination of unlike words and images, but they did so within the context of media. In particular, McLuhan’s 1963 understanding of cool functioned by way of juxtapositions-cut and pasted selections can be presented not only as a narration of media development but also as a demonstration of how media operates. McLuhan’s work in The Gutenberg Galaxy (1962) and Understanding Media repeated technology’s propensity for juxtaposition as an argumentative strategy. For McLuhan, cool was the highly participatory, media environment brought on by the electronic age that created this mosaic of cultural and textual juxtapositions.” (223)


  • Sterne, Jonathan. The Audible Past: Cultural Origins of Sound Reproduction.Durham: Duke UP, 2003.

“To follow McLuhan for just a moment, telegraphy could have intense affective and ideological significance precisely because of this relative paucity of sensory data. The experience of telegraphy required a great deal of involvement from its users.” (151)


  • Sui, D.Z. et. al.. “A Tetradic Analysis of GIS and Society Using McLuhan’s Law [sic] of the [sic]Media.” The Canadian Geographer 47.1 (2003): 5-17.

“McLuhan believes that every product of human effort manifests the same four dimensions. His tetrad enables us to reposition ourselves into a holistic perceptive mode — the mode of the dynamically many-centred — and to move away from the monolithic linear visual image. Instead of simplistic utopian and dystopian views, McLuhan’s inclusive and irreducible four-part law of media provides a better conceptual framework within which to understand the relationship between GIS and society. As an exploratory probe resting on a set of questions, instead of a bounded theory, the tetrad will facilitate our simultaneous understanding and integral awareness. To confine ourselves to only one metaphor, as most authors have done so far, is to engage in synecdoche –to mistake the part for the whole.” (10)


  • Summers, David. Real Spaces: World Art History and the Rise of Western Modernism. London: Phaidon, 2003.

“Russian revolutionaries, like French revolutionaries before them, advocated a universal language that would erase fundamental cultural differences in a way more nearly feasible with the appearance of radio (and television). This transnational potential, however, has hardly been realized, and, like common space and time, seems to be widely perceived as much a threat as a state of affairs to be desired. The world is not a global village, and if anything, the plethora of ‘information,’ all of it with the aura of ‘objectivity,’ reinforces ancient centrisms as it encourages new ones, with entirely unforeseeable consequences.” (655)


  • Swetz, Christian. “Was das Medium mit dem wissen macht: McLuhan und die Wissensorganisation.” Information 54.2: 99-105.


  • Willmott, Glenn. “The Virtual Marshall McLuhan [review].” University of Toronto Quarterly 72.1 (2002-2003): 525-6.


  • Reinhold Martin, The Organizational Complex: Architecture, Media, and Corporate Space (Cambridge, MA: MIT P, 2003)

    15: “Media organize. To be sure, they also communicate; they transmit messages, circulate signs. But to leave it at that is to fail to grasp the significance—for architecture—of Marshall McLuhan’s dictum ‘The medium is the message.’ For in the cybernetically organized universe in which McLuhan made his home, it was precisely organization that was communicated—as both message and medium, image and effect, form and function—through the multimedia channels that never ceased to fascinate him. There, where architecture was both humbled and enchanted by its own status as one among many media, is where we begin, by reconstructing a small fragment of that tangled network I am calling the organizational complex.”

    19-20: “In a letter dated 28 March 1951, a young Herbert Marshall McLuhan introduces himself to [Norbert] Wiener by declaring that ‘as a friend and student of Sigfried Giedion’s I have paid special attention to your Cybernetics and The Human Use of Human Beings,’ Wiener’s two most widely read books. Given the free use McLuhan would later make of cybernetic principles like feedback in his own work it is not [20] surprising that he contacts Wiener at this early date. Slightly more surprising, perhaps, is his use of Giedion’s name as a reference. Yet a year before McLuhan’s letter, Giedion, too, corresponded with Wiener, thanking him for the opportunity to attend a meeting of the Inter-science Committee at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (where Wiener taught), before which he was later invited to speak.”

    37: “Through the fissures of a bipolar cold war there thus emerged a logic of control so encompassing that it aspired to the status of both material and discursive regulator, an organizational ‘pattern’ encoded in images circulating through the same mass-media networks … that McLuhan analyzed in The Mechanical Bride.”

    62: “The reappearance of the sequence of media laid out in Moholy-Nagy’s writings of the 1920s, with television taking the place of architecture at the end of the line, suggests that [Gyorgy] Kepes is far more interested in the structural effects of each medium than he is in the manifest content of the ‘message.’ Or, again to paraphrase McLuhan (whom Kepes would later befriend and publish), the message being communicated by the language of vision lies in the properties of the media of optical communication themselves. This is where ‘organization’ literally enters the picture. The ‘organized image’ is not the carrier of a message; it is the message.”