Page 102 was a page, among many, in McLuhan’s The Medium is the Massage that stuck out to me. It depicts seniors in Amherst walking out on a graduation address by Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara and has the word ‘EDUCATION’ written in bold across the bottom of the page. This image encapsulates many of the messages that McLuhan emphasizes in the rest of the book. Activism, or rather praxis, is, I believe, an extremely powerful learning arena, one that surpasses the classroom. In the previous page, p. 100, McLuhan talks about the shift education must undergo: “from instruction, from imposing of stencils to discovery – to probing and exploration and to the recognition of the language of forms.” I believe that praxis can be seen as this shift, can be seen as the counter to education as a tool for domination, and a shift to using education as a tool for liberation (as Freire claims in Pedagogy of the Oppressed).

Education as a tool for domination is, in some sense, the professionalism that is talked of in page 93 of the book. The educated person is “well-adjusted,” an “expert,” and blind to their environment. The amateur, the person who uses education as a tool for liberation, however, is able to see their environment for what it is, and further, as McLuhan states, is able to sharpen our perception of it as well (p. 88).

 

 

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