Friday, April 22, 2011

Daily Thoughts 4/22/2011 (You know nothing of my work!, The Forgotten Founding Father)

Title page of "A Dictionary of the English Language," written by Noah Webster. Image courtesy of the Yale University Manuscripts & Archives Digital Images Database, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut.  1830-1840

Daily Thoughts 4/22/2011

I enjoyed reading The Forgotten Founding Father, even though it is written as a popular biography, it uses a lot of primary source material for its research.  It took eighteen years for Noah Webster to write An American Dictionary.  He wrote it by himself.  This is an amzing feat.  Nowadays dictionaries are written by a team of people.

I am looking at Marshall McLun You Know Nothing of My Work.  It is sitting on top of The Forgotten Founding Father.  Both are biographies about people who understood words and meaning.

Marshall McLuhan is famous for the concept of the "Global Village" and "The Medium is the Message."  What is stunning about his work is that it predates the internet and at the same time seems to explain many of the things which are currently happening.  The constant change, the unpredictability, and the fear that go with not knowing what is going to happen next are eloquently described by Marshall McLuhan in terms of television and electronic media.

1 comment:

E.J. Apostrophe said...

How stunning to think that Webster wrote the dictionary by his lonesome! Wow! How inspiring to see someone who wanted to make a difference in the world!