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The Gutenberg Galaxy: The Making of Typographic Man Paperback – March 1 1962

4.3 out of 5 stars 24 ratings

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Paperback, March 1 1962
CDN$ 67.03 CDN$ 19.04
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Movable type, as much if not more than any meaningful arrangement of that type, transformed Renaissance consciousness--just as electronic circuitry is transforming us now. That is the basic premise of Marshall McLuhan's The Gutenberg Galaxy. New technologies create new human environments, and "technological environments are not merely passive containers … but are active processes that reshape people and other technologies alike." McLuhan's second book, The Gutenberg Galaxy was published in 1962, won the Canadian Governor General's Medal that same year, and pushed McLuhan toward international prominence. Like most of McLuhans's other work--Understanding Media or The Global Village, for example--The Gutenberg Galaxy is a rich, dense text that draws freely, almost frantically, from works of philosophy, economics, political theory, history, and especially literature. There are liberal doses of Shakespeare--text and commentary--sprinkled throughout, as well as trenchant appropriations from Rabelais, Cervantes, Leibnitz, Blake, Joyce, and many others. Attempting to match his medium to his metaphors, McLuhan structures his book using what he calls "a mosaic or field approach" and ends up producing more than 100 short sections separated by pithy glosses in large bold type, such as "Schizophrenia may be a necessary consequence of literacy," or " Nobody ever made a grammatical error in a non-literate society." Today's reader might find the "mosaic of perpetually interacting forms" into which the author organizes his data and quotations distinctly Web-like. Indeed, one could say of McLuhan and his complex rhetorical circuitry what McLuhan himself says about Shakespeare: "His insights appear so richly in his lines that it is very difficult to select among them." --Russell Prather

Review

'One of the most stimulating and important books that has been written in our time.'

(Saturday Night)

'Endlessly stimulating, informative, and liberating.'

(The Observer Weekend Review)

Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5
24 customer ratings
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Reviewed in Canada on January 5, 2013
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Reviewed in Canada on February 2, 2000
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Reviewed in Canada on September 14, 1998
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Top international reviews

david80
5.0 out of 5 stars Gutenberg Galaxy - is a foundation document!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 29, 2015
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Leser B
1.0 out of 5 stars Uralt,verknickt
Reviewed in Germany on May 9, 2016
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Bartosz Sobieraj
5.0 out of 5 stars The Gutenberg Galaxy
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 5, 2013
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soko
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 12, 2015
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Desron 449
5.0 out of 5 stars Lead to bok Undersanding Media which predicts how your cell phone affects you merely by it's presence.
Reviewed in the United States on January 6, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars BOOK
Reviewed in the United States on January 23, 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Prophetic
Reviewed in the United States on February 10, 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United States on August 15, 2017
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in the United States on August 26, 2018
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Carlos Ramos Mattei
5.0 out of 5 stars A key to understanding our times
Reviewed in the United States on August 5, 2013
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BoldlyAsserted
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic insight
Reviewed in the United States on March 5, 2013
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GG
5.0 out of 5 stars The Gutenberg Galaxy is the most important of McLuhan's books
Reviewed in the United States on December 19, 2013
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Rafael Reyes
5.0 out of 5 stars The Gutenberg Galaxy is a great book. This book is the vision of a ...
Reviewed in the United States on October 20, 2015
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M. R. D.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Insights
Reviewed in the United States on July 27, 2015
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Thomas Deerfield
5.0 out of 5 stars An Academic Read
Reviewed in the United States on March 9, 2006
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