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medieval history

“‘Authorship’—in the sense we know it today, individual intellectual effort related to the book as an economic commodity—was practically unknown before the advent of print technology. Medieval scholars were indifferent to the precise identity of the ‘books’ they studied. In turn, they rarely signed even what was clearly their own work. They were a humble service organization. Procuring texts was often a very tedious and time-consuming task. Many small texts were transmitted into volumes of miscellaneous content, very much like ‘jottings’ in a scrapbook, and, in this transmission, authorship was often lost.”


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source: The Medium is the Massage (New York: Touchstone, 1967), 122.

category: , , , ,

medium: Nonfiction

notes: Marshall McLuhan and graphic designer Quentin Fiore co-created this book and Jerome Agel “produced” it. More info about the publishing arrangement here

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