He was a New Critic only for about 10 years (1936-46).
By '47, he's writing articles complaining about Leavis and Richards:
"Inside Blake and Hollywood". The Sewanee Review, Vol. 55, No. 4 (Oct. - Dec., 1947), pp. 710-715
Having met Lewis, the world's first "media ecologist", in '43 and "swearing allegiance" to him in an article in '44,
he began to show "Mechanical Bride" slides by '45 or '46.
By '49, he's becoming a media theorist and writing to Kenner that he's going to promote Lewis more.
See New Zealander Andrew Chrystall's PhD (2007).
Meeting Pound in June '48 may have had an influence in his decision.
He comes out of the closet once he gets his tenure in '52.
On Oct 1, 2013, at 6:11 PM, Stephen J Adams wrote:
> Yes, he was often obscure, sometimes wildly wrong (facts be damned), always brilliant. I understood "medium is message" and transference to media of the New Critical "language not paraphrasable content" thinking that I had been indoctrinated into. McLuhan was a New Critic before he was a media theorist.
> On 10/01/13, Bob Dobbs <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> The myth is that nobody understood McLuhan in the 60s and by the 90s he was more than obvious, even obsolete.
>> How did you fare with his ideas as a student in '67-68?
>> Was the "radio analogy" very helpful in grasping Pound?
>> On Oct 1, 2013, at 4:39 AM, Stephen J Adams wrote:
>>> I too was in McLuhan's grad class at Toronto, 1967-68. His talk -- or maybe his oracles -- frequently dealt with relationships among literature, radio, TV and other media. Incidentally, the radio analogy was made earlier in an academic article on "The Waste Land" by Delmore Schwartz in 1945. ("T.S. Eliot as International Hero").
> Stephen J. Adams
> Department of English
> University of Western Ontario
> "Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope. Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore we must be saved by love."
> – Reinhold Niebuhr