War and Peace in the Global Village

War and Peace in the Global Village

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Originally published in 1968 and available again in a new edition this look at a planet made smaller by new technologies is relevant to issues of the digital revolution and the impact of the Internet and illustrates how electronic information travelling the globe at the speed of light has eroded the rules of the linear, literate world.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 192 pages
  • 106.68 x 175.26 x 12.7mm | 464.47g
  • Random House Children's Publishers UK
  • Corgi Childrens
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • Illustrations, facsims., ports.
  • 0552038458
  • 9780552038454

Review Text

Actually, Mr. McLuhan is quite old-fashioned. He comes on as a harbinger of the new - his message is that it is necessary to adjust to the idea of change - but in 1840 de Tocqueville had already recognized that change was the primary constant of American life. In this book, McLuhan, a great synthesizer of intellectual data, uses the metaphor of war to explain the effects of technology (i.e., innovation, or change). From such simple truisms as "All human progress is a result of standing on the shoulders of our predecessors," he proceeds to the more sensational notion that "Every new technology necessitates a new war. . . . War is an accelerated program of education - compulsory education for the other party." On the other hand, he points out, as the leaders of both sides intensively study the habits, resources, and psychology of the enemy, "today war, as it were, has become the little red schoolhouse of the global village." Similarly, he sees "education as war" and "clothing as war" - the latter, particularly, is "an anti-environmental gesture." All of which is not greatly instructive to the reader, except perhaps as a rich but incoherent reading list (citations range from B. F. Skinner to the I. Ching, and Finnegans Wake, quoted liberally in the margins, is used as the leitmotif). Visually, the book is less interesting than The Medium is the Massage - Fiore uses the same conglomeration of graphic source material, but the arrangement is less inspired, and a trompe l'oeil is rarely as effective the second (or is it the third?) time round. (Kirkus Reviews)show more