In parts of The Medium is the Massage Mcluhan uses cartoons and parody to illustrate how the common audience internalizes media messages and uses media to teach children.
In The Medium is the Massage, this cartoon parodies the Dick and Jane book series. Someone we presume to be the mother of a young boy reads a book, “See Dick. See Dick protest. Protest Dick! Protest!” This both pokes fun at the white-bread America books we tell our children and demonstrates the nature of protests in the 1970s. By turning the Dick and Jane stories into stories about protest that parents would teach their kids, we question if we teach our children to be passive or to be critical of society.
I came across this The New Yorker cartoon from October 14, 2016 that has a similar message. A mother of a young girl reads, “So the moral is, slow and steady and not being a misogynistic, fearmongering monster wins the race.” This commentary on the current presidential election is used to parody bedtime children stories by not teaching children actual morals, but a bare minimum of decency.
How does media play a role in raising children? Does Mcluhan pose that media teaches children to be complacent? How would he like children to be raised into critical, socially-active citizens? How could media play a part in his vision?