Our friends at Enculturation have just published a special issue on Marshall MacLuhan. From the issue introduction:
Marshall McLuhan would have turned 100 on July 21, 2011. We launch this collection of essays on December 31, 2011, thirty-one years to the day of his death. His work, ideas, and methods are alive and well in the field of Media Ecology, and some excellent scholarship in the past 10 years (Richard Cavell’s McLuhan in Space, Donald Theall’s Virtual McLuhan, Lance Strate and Edward Wachtel’s The Legacy of McLuhan) has re-assessed his relevance for the 21st century. In this centennial year, McLuhan has been celebrated by media theorists in Brussells (“McLuhan’s Philosophy of Media”), in Berlin (“Re-Touching McLuhan”), and in virtual space (“McLuhan Speaks”), the nearly year-long celebration on Maui (“MoM: McLuhan on Maui”), and around the world (in Winnipeg (2010), Toronto, Edmonton, Rome, New York, Katowice, Budapest, Liverpool and more).
But McLuhan remains a marginal, sometimes mysterious figure, most notably in his home discipline of English studies. McLuhan was as much a literary critic as a media critic, as much a rhetorical theorist as a media theorist. His place in the history of rhetoric has not been firmly established, despite his career-long commitment to understanding this vital branch of the classical trivium. The year-long celebration of his 100th birthday presents a kairotic moment for re-assessing his contributions and continued relevance in all these disciplines, or any field concerned with rhetoric, writing, and culture.
Congratulations to Kevin Brooks and David Beard on compiling this important and timely special issue!