Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man
Marshall McLuhan (MIT Press)

McLuhan, who coined the phrase "the medium is the message," predicted cultural changes decades before they happened. His original writing presents a mosaic of ideas, probes, and aphorisms.

The Medium and the Light: Reflections on Religion
Marshall McLuhan, edited by Eric McLuhan and Jacek Szklarek (Wipf & Stock)

This is the only collection of McLuhan's writings, speeches, and interviews that explicitly addresses the theological implications of media and technology. In some ways McLuhan, a devout Catholic, was doing stealth theology through his technological musings.

The Disappearance of Childhood
Neil Postman (Vintage/Random House)

Postman focuses on the shift from a literate culture to an image-based culture and its impact on human development. Here he shows how the idea of "childhood," which emerged during the Enlightenment, is now on the decline due in large part to the advent of television.

Orality And Literacy: The Technologizing of the Word
Walter J. Ong (Routledge)

Ong, a Catholic priest as well as a professor of humanities, shows how and why our culture is changing due to shifts in technology. He draws on anthropological research of oral cultures, literate cultures, and what he termed the culture of "secondary orality," or electronic culture.

Generation MySpace: Helping Your Teen Survive Online Adolescence
Candice M. Kelsey (Marlowe & Company)

Kelsey's book offers an excellent, practical, easy-to-read introduction and guide to the dangers and challenges facing teens in the land of social networking.

Related Elsewhere:

Shane Hipps is author of Flickering Pixels: How Technology Shapes Your Faith.

Understanding Media, The Medium and the Light, The Disappearance of Childhood, Orality and Literacy, and Generation Myspace are available from Barnes & Noble and other book retailers.

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