Tuesday, September 13, 2011

McLuhan on Radio

In anticipation of this coming Saturday's big blow out, Media @ the Center: A McLuhan Centenary Symposium, our good friends producer Catie Talarski and host John Dankosky of the Connecticut Public Broadcasting radio program, Where We Live, made the McLuhan Centenary their topic for yesterday morning's radio show.  The podcast was available online a few hours later, and I would embed it here, but Blogger strangely does not allow us to embed audio files, only videos.  So you have to go over to Where We Live: Marshall McLuhan's Media Message to listen to it, and download the MP3 for future reference.

Eric McLuhan was the main guest on this program, and I have to say that he was in rare form, or perhaps more to the point, there was very good chemistry between him and John Dankosky, that resulted in an especially interesting show.  I join in for the second half, and did my best not to detract from the proceedings (although I did interrupt Eric once--sorry about that).  

(I was supposed to be participating from the beginning, through a remote link-up from Fordham's WFUV studio, but the young student tech who was doing it for the first time just couldn't make it work, and after half an hour of failed attempts, just put me on a regular phone line. But that was okay, I'm glad Eric had more time to shine, and that was the only thing that went wrong yesterday, as I also was on a panel discussion on Gregory Bateson at the American Museum of Natural History that same evening, but you know that from my previous post, Stepping Up For An Ecology of Mind.  I should add that the panel discussion went very well, it was especially enjoyable to participate with filmmaker Nora Bateson and her sister, the esteemed scholar Mary Catherine Bateson, and with Rex Weyler, co-founder of Greenpeace International (an organization whose genesis was strongly influenced by both Bateson and McLuhan).  It was also a great pleasure spending some time talking with another of McLuhan's offspring there, Teri aka TC McLuhan, an author and filmmaker who gave the documentary, An Ecology of Mind, two thumbs up!).

Anyway, in case you're still not sure about whether to head on over to Where We Live: Marshall McLuhan's Media Message or not, here's the write-up from their page:

Marshall McLuhan was the prophet of today’s digital world.  This year, he would have turned 100.  
Try on, for example, this passage from the beginning of McLuhan’s most widely read work, “The Medium is the Massage.”

Youth instinctively understands the present environment – the electric drama. It lives mythically and in depth. This is the reason for the great alienation between generations. Wars, revolutions, civil uprisings are interfaces within the new environments created by electric informational media.

Sound at all like what happened with Twitter and the Arab spring?  But to be fair, it also described what was already happening in the 1960s when many of his ideas took root - pictures from Vietnam, rock stars on television - a glimpse of counterculture in everyone’s living room.

But if McLuhan was right - the medium itself was the message - not the content.  So what’s on the media horizon?  What does Marshall McLuhan tell us about how we are today?

For the answers to these, and many other questions, tune in, link in, or download!

No comments: