Inspired by Eugene Gomringer’s Snow, which uses the repetition of “snow is _” as a way of rethinking what snow is, I set out to find a word or thing that I would like to explore in-depth on my broadside. After a discussion with Dr. Sherwood, it hit me that I should try and do something that includes French. This way the HSS would now include a piece of home and could maybe even educate people on what French can be outside of France. So I set out to represent what French is to me.
Visually I’d like to have Québec’s flag as the backdrop for my broadside as a reminder that the French addressed in the piece is the one from my home. It might also draw attention since it is not a widely known flag, and it probably isn’t the first flag that comes to mind for most when thinking of French. I have yet to decide if it should integrate the flag as a photograph or a simple graphic.
I know I want the text to be separated into two columns and for the font to be very simple. Perhaps the adjectives after the “French is/Le français est” should be in italics, perhaps that will be distracting or won’t make for an aesthetically pleasing repetition of pattern with the words, experiments will be in order.
McLuhan’s The Medium is the Massage uses the visual to support his take on the 60s new technology and how the image, with the apparition of television, was affecting people’s relationship to information and meaning. The way images support McLuhan’s argument, however, isn’t always obvious at first glance. The reader has to decipher the relationship between what’s written and the supporting visuals.
The parallel between the two images, therefore, lies in the idea that new technologies reshape our relationship to the world. The effect of television for McLuhan was to result in just as big of a shift to our culture as the railroad was at its time. And whether we agree with that comparison, there is no denying that the cartoon still resonates with the reader in 2020 as the addition of the internet and social media only furthers the speed at which we receive information on a daily basis.
On page 70 and 71, the spread includes the image of a cartoon on the left and a picture of a railroad on the right. With little text off of it is still possible to see a relationship between the two pages. On one hand, the cartoon is a commentary on how new technologies make the news more accessible, therefore making people aware of current events at a faster rate than ever before. The railroad was also a technology that changed the American landscape. It made traveling much easier than before. Beyond physical transportation, railroads also made ideas spread. It changed people’s perspective of the world.