October 20, 2013 by Welcome to the Jungle
“A fish does not realize its medium until that water changes through the adding of ink or poisons.” – Marshall McLuhan
By Lyssa Dawn
Something that I truly admire is the way that Marshall McLuhan explains his perspective on things by confusing people; me being one of them, which is why I chose to dig deeper into this specific quote.
The message is quite simple, really. You don’t realize how the media, society, or even the environment affects you until it’s too late; until the ink and poisons are slowly added to the mainstream. And before we know it, it becomes a part of the norm. Every day, we, “the fish”, are being told what to look like, how to act, what products to buy, and we’re okay with that? We’re letting the media run over us in such ways? That being said, you cannot hide from the voice that speaks for all of us. You are nothing but a fish. Understand what’s being added to the water before you’re left alone in what’s left of it.
This quote relates to media studies in several ways. The class teaches us to be aware of our surroundings. It gives us a chance to be prepared, to build up our strength, before we’re overtaken by what we’re told is “normal” but know is not. Some of us are aware that the media is unconsciously affecting us, but the rest of us continue on swimming through the mainstream. We’re being taught that it doesn’t matter how much ink or poison is being added to our water, we need to be able to tell what is right and wrong, who we are, and what we’ll become, because there’s no going back.