Movies: The Reel World – McLuhan

June 14th, 2010

McLuhan, Marshall. Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man. 1st MIT Press ed. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1994.

In this chapter, McLuhan begins by noting that movies, which for the purposes of this post only certain aspects refer also to video, merges the mechanical and the organic in a special way. On the base level, the idea of a camera (mechanical) recording something organic like the growth of a flower or the fluid movement of someone walking is such a merging. However, on a somewhat deeper level, film takes something that may not be organic and makes it seem so by presenting a sequential series of still images into a moving picture, such as making a chair walk across a room. Film also links technology with print in that they both generate fantasy in the viewer or reader. Read the rest of this entry »