Download Unthinking Modernity: Innis, McLuhan, and the Frankfurt by Judith Stamps PDF

By Judith Stamps

This comparability of ecu and Canadian political concept, reinterprets the communications concept of Harold Innis and Marshall McLuhan as a Canadian variation of the serious conception linked to the early Frankfurt tuition. Stamps argues that Innis and McLuhan labored in the direction of a conception of ways westerners have constructed classifications in which they understand the realm. additionally, he indicates that they used insights derived from their North American adventure so as to add a brand new media-based standpoint to this kind of conception.

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Additional info for Unthinking Modernity: Innis, McLuhan, and the Frankfurt School

Sample text

But it would not allow them to define the object, in lockstep fashion, as having a single founding cause or essence. No perspective would appear dualistically as a base, to borrow from Marx, in relation to which all others 21 Space, Sound, and Negative Dialectics were superstructural. " Adorno and Benjamin called their totalities "constellations"; McLuhan, by conscious extension, called his "galaxies" or "mosaics"; and Innis developed the practice but had no special term for it. The resulting writings were negative or decentred in two main senses.

In this world, concepts carried a status that mere objects could never match. This practice, retained in modernity, had to be turned around. " One had to recover the qualities erased in the universe according to the catalogue. Concepts should play a new role, Adorno wrote; they should reveal what their abstractionist tendencies eliminated and highlight what they invariably failed to cover17 - indeed, they should examine themselves. " The constellation was a new approach to social science. 22 The negative aspect of their task was to define the objects by showing what lay at their margins.

In expanding Hegel's work, Marx was especially keen to show that this fragmentation was responsible for maintaining the illusion that divisions between socio-economic classes were pre-ordained rather than historically developed. Marx's insight became central to the Frankfurt School's analysis of the modern spatial bias. But the theorists did not derive it directly from Marx. Economistic readings of Marx were so common early in this century that it took a groundbreaking Hegelian interpretation of Capital to illuminate the broader, cultural aspects of his work.

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