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1981
Gender and Media Ecology
  • ISSN: 1539-7785
  • E-ISSN: 2048-0717

Abstract

In current scholarship, Susanne Langer and her theories of art, perception and connectivity are less well known than McLuhan’s. Comparison brings to the fore that both were concerned with the dulling effects of heavy-handed science and technology unregulated by human hand and heart, and both understood the expressive and liberatory possibilities of language as media and metaphor. By reading ‘diffractively’ – finding new connections and honouring patterns over polemics – this article brings Langer back into the scholarly conversation and reinvigorates our understanding of McLuhan. Langer did not consider her thought as principled by feminism. Yet according to recent critical biographer Adrienne Dengerink Chaplin, her work was rooted in feminist ontology for espousing principles of relationality and embodiment. My article argues that McLuhan, too, eschewed dichotomies and linearities of traditional thought for the principle of relationality. Extending this claim further, my article also submits that media ecology – with its emphasis on interconnectivities, on feeling and thinking, on non-linearity – has features in common with feminist thinking.

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2021-06-01
2024-06-16
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