Monday, August 15, 2011

McLuhan | Morality | Art

St. Thomas Aquinas
In another of McLuhan’s early unpublished works we find him studying/meditating on Aristotle’s and St. Thomas’ disquisitions on intellectual virtues. McLuhan notes that there are five: (1) intelligence, (2) science, (3) wisdom, (4) prudence and (5) art. The first three, McLuhan notes, are defined as virtues of the intellect in its speculative function. The second two are virtues of the intellect in its  practical function. McLuhan goes on to note that prudence concerns right action while art directs right making. Ergo, he says, artistic activity is non-moral but accidentally becomes involved in moral questions.

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