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Marshall McLuhan by Douglas Coupland
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1555108,943 (3.56)3



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From the title, I expected that this book was mostly going to give us Coupland's take on the significance of McLuhan's work. There is a little of that, but only a little, and in a footnote on page 147 Coupland makes clear this is a "general biography with limited space" (it turns out the title is quoting the words scripted for McLuhan's cameo in Annie Hall by Woody Allen). It's interesting both in terms of the short insights Coupland does have space to include, and, if you're a Coupland fan like me, it's clear that some of the qualities that he praises in McLuhan are ones that he has sought to emulate in his own novels. Not bad, could have been better. ( )
  djalchemi | Nov 24, 2012 |
Interesting subject matter but too cold a medium for the message of a life. ( )
  triscuit | Sep 7, 2011 |
I 've got over 90% of all the other McLuhan books! This one is good and quirky! ( )
  moshido | Apr 12, 2011 |
Showing 3 of 3
In retelling McLuhan’s tale, Coupland makes the occasional misstep. He belabors some points, and his obligatory meta flourishes fall flat as often as they amuse. But those are minor irritations. This is an affectionate, wry portrait that provides a perfect introduction to one of the most influential and misunderstood thinkers of recent times.
Like the man it chronicles, Coupland’s book is full of unconventional angles, ricochets and resonances. Rather than offering a ­doorstop-size addition to the Great Man canon, it comes in at just over 200 pages that nonetheless sprawl and unfold to their own idiosyncratic rhythm.
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Surveys the life and career of the social theorist best known for the quotation, "The medium is the message," who helped shape the culture of the 1960s and predicted the future of television and the rise of the Internet.

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