Today’s Toronto Globe and Mail’s has a wonderful article celebrating the contribution of Marshal McLuhan. The entire article should be required reading for everyone dabbling in technology, information, communication, and literacy. In other words, everyone. Treat yourself to a good read here. While at it, educators absolutely need to be questioning and challenging just what their school system is defining as “literacy” and asking why we’re not more serious about making this a central part of a child’s education. How can you claim to be preparing students to be citizens in this world when understanding this isn’t central to their education?
I’ve clipped a couple of paragraphs from the article below but just use that to tease you to read the entire article.
“Perhaps, more than any other single individual in recent history, McLuhan adequately equipped humankind with the mental charts, graphs, maps and practical means to learn its way through the maze of educating, illuminating and reconciling the planet’s current population with the onslaught of what he termed The Age of Information.”
“Most importantly, though, McLuhan’s observations have since come into their own as profound commentaries on the ways in which relationships among individuals have been altered in Cyberia, where the body remains parked (or paralyzed) while the mind of the techno-traveller jacks in and roams the gratification grids of the information galaxy.”
“As McLuhan cannily noted, new technologies would extend the range of both body and mind in ways that irrevocably altered an individual’s relationships with both the environment and every other resident of the global village, creating a universal nervous system of vast complexity and sophistication shared by any and all in possession of the inclination and the equipment to participate.”