Television: Prophet of Cool

Marshall McLuhan

His writing was clumsy, his thoughts badly organized, and even he complained that he had trouble understanding his ideas. But he persisted nonetheless, and when he died last week in Toronto at the age of 69, Marshall McLuhan was recognized as one of the most influential thinkers of the '60s. Some of his insights into the nature of television and the electronic age became conventional wisdom, and people who did not know his name confidently repeated his most famous aphorism: "The medium is the message."

What that means is that television is...

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