The wisdom of the narcissus myth does not convey any

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The wisdom of the Narcissus myth does not convey any idea that Narcissus fell in love with anything he regarded as himself (McLuhan, Understanding Media 41-42). Narcissus’s problem, then, is not self-love, but misrecognition (Fisher). This misrecognition comes about because media and technology are extensions of man that bring about amputation of our physical bodies (McLuhan, Understanding Media 45). Media affect the psychic and social complex of a person. Self-amputation is closely related to extensions, because the moment a human makes a machine do something, either physical or mental work, the human ‘offloads’ his work and relieves himself from the burden. McLuhan sees this as auto-amputation.
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10 At the same, this auto-amputation develops into overstimulation, which brings about numbness in individuals and society (McLuhan Understanding Media 7-9). It is because of this numbness, that Narcissus does not recognize himself in the water, since self-amputation forbids self-recognition (McLuhan, Understanding Media 43). The principle of self-amputation is an immediate relieve of the strain on the central nervous system. ‘ We have to numb our central nervous system when it is extended and exposed […] T hus the age of anxiety and of electric media is also the age of the unconscious and of apathy’ (McLuhan, Understanding Media 47). McLuhan is linking the Narcissus myth to mass media such as television, film and radio. The Internet in corporates all of these media: ‘What began as a medium whose content was text, and expanded in the 1990s to include images and sounds, has become […] a medium that offers telephone […] , radio […], and television’ (Levinson, 5). McLuhan argues that every me dium incorporates an earlier medium: The effect of the medium is made strong and intense just because it is given another medium as "content." The content of a movie is a novel or a play or an opera. […] The "content" of writing or print is speech, but the reader is almost entirely unaware either of print or of speech (McLuhan Understanding Media 18). The content of the medium is none other than another medium. The main difference between the Web and the other media is the democratic nature of this particular medium . The Internet’s characteristic, something that is even more underline d in Web 2.0, is the possibility of adding, altering and sharing content. The online experience is two-way. This makes the user an active agent since it decides what is being represented. Not only prior media is the content of the Internet, but so too is the human user who, unlike the consumer of other mass media, creates content online with almost every use (Levinson 38-39). In this context, social media, dedicated to representing people, only reinforces the idea of the user being the content.
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