The Electric Information Age Book
McLuhan/Agel/Fiore and the Experimental Paperback
Adam Michaels, Jeffrey T. Schnapp
Publication date 1/4/2012
4.25 x 7 inches (10.8 x 17.8 cm), Paperback
240 pages, 50 color illustrations, 150 b/w illustrations
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The Electric Information Age Book explores the nine-year window of mass-market publishing in the sixties and seventies when formerly backstage players'designers, graphic artists, editors'stepped into the spotlight to produce a series of exceptional books. Aimed squarely at the young media-savvy consumers of the Electronic Information Age, these small, inexpensive paperbacks aimed to bring the ideas of contemporary thinkers like Marshall McLuhan, R. Buckminster Fuller, Herman Kahn, and Carl Sagan to the masses. Graphic designers such as Quentin Fiore (The Medium is the Massage, 1967) employed a variety of radical techniques'verbal visual collages and other typographic pyrotechnics'that were as important to the content as the text. The Electric Information Age Book is the first book-length history of this brief yet highly influential publishing phenomenon.
Jeffrey T. Schnapp holds the Pierotti Chair in Italian Literature at Stanford, where he founded the Stanford Humanities Lab in 2000 with the aim of creating a transdisciplinary platform for testing out future scenarios for the arts and humanities in a post-print world. Since 2009, he has served as a fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, and visiting professor in Comparative Literature and at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University.
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