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Philosophies 2017, 2(2), 9; doi:10.3390/philosophies2020009

The Spiral Structure of Marshall McLuhan’s Thinking

1
School of Image Arts, Ryerson University, 350 Victoria St, Toronto, ON M5B 2K3, Canada
2
Department of Physics, University of Toronto, 60 St. George, Toronto, ON M5S 1A7, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marcin J. Schroeder
Received: 9 February 2017 / Revised: 18 March 2017 / Accepted: 26 March 2017 / Published: 4 April 2017
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [324 KB, uploaded 4 April 2017]

Abstract

We examine the spiral structure of the thinking and the work of Marshall McLuhan, which we believe will provide a new way of viewing McLuhan’s work. In particular, we believe that the way he reversed figure and ground, reversed content and medium, reversed cause and effect, and the relationship he established between the content of a new medium and the older media it obsolesced all contain a spiral structure going back and forth in time. Finally, the time structure of his Laws of Media in which a new medium obsolesced an older medium, while retrieving an even older medium and then when pushed far enough flipped into a still newer medium has the feeling of a spiral. We will also examine the spiral structure of the thinking and work of those thinkers and artists that most influenced McLuhan such as Vico, Hegel, Marx, Freud, Joyce, TS Eliot, Wyndham Lewis and the Vorticism movement. View Full-Text
Keywords: spiral; McLuhan; reversal; figure/ground; Laws of Media; media; environment/anti-environment; cause; effect spiral; McLuhan; reversal; figure/ground; Laws of Media; media; environment/anti-environment; cause; effect
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Pruska Oldenhof, I.; Logan, R.K. The Spiral Structure of Marshall McLuhan’s Thinking. Philosophies 2017, 2, 9.

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