McLuhan reading Havelock

McLuhan referenced Eric Havelock’s Crucifixion of Intellectual Man1 in his 1954 speech to the Catholic Renascence Society, ‘Eliot and the Manichean Myth’:

Today many thoughtful people are torn between the claims of time and space, and speak even of The Crucifixion of Intellectual Man as he is mentally torn in these opposite directions.

From an unpublished review written in 1952 or 1953 it seems that McLuhan had read Havelock’s book immediately after it appeared. For the second half of Havelock’s book has his translation of Prometheus by Aeschylus and in the first part much discussion is given to Zeus in the play as an evil god. In ‘The Heart Of Darkness’, a review of Melville’s Quarrel With God (1952) by Lawrence Thompson, McLuhan observes:

The condition of men in this [split] world is that of a Prometheus betrayed by a devil-god.

  1. Published in 1950 in the UK and in 1951 in the US.