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(2011) Medialität und Realität, Wiesbaden, Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.

After the mediatic turn

McLuhan's training of the senses and media pedagogy today

Norm Friesen, Theo Hug

pp. 83-101

The "mediatic turn", the notion that media present a kind of "a priori" condition for knowledge and learning, was identified some ten years ago. The purpose of this paper is to consider the potential of this idea, and of related notions of the "constitutive power" of media specifically for the theory and practice of education. We consider these matters by looking at an example that has been articulated more than 40 years earlier, and that remains original and instructive today: Marshall McLuhan's notion of media pedagogy, articulated specifically in terms of a "training of the senses." As Janine Marchessault (2004) says, over the course of his career, McLuhan articulated "a specifically argued pedagogical enterprise" that is central to his "aesthetically-based, highly performative and historically grounded… ontribution to the study of media" (xi, 10, 34). We focus on this pedagogical enterprise particularly as it develops from McLuhan's unusual understanding of the senses – including his critique of the dominance of the visual in our culture. This provides us with a point of leverage for discerning new possibilities and challenges for media pedagogy today – ones that take into account the mediatic turn, but without falling prey to various mediatic determinisms. In doing so, this paper shows that there remains much to be accomplished in developing concepts and practices for education and schooling as an engaging "training of the senses' in a thoroughly mediatized world.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-531-92896-8_6

Full citation:

Friesen, N. , Hug, T. (2011)., After the mediatic turn: McLuhan's training of the senses and media pedagogy today, in J. Fromme, S. Iske & W. Marotzki (eds.), Medialität und Realität, Wiesbaden, Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, pp. 83-101.

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