a detailed history of the future ...

To realise the goal, McLuhan sets his “New American Vortex” to
work on two tasks: (1) To digest not only the work of Wyndham Lewis,but all of the lights he saw as making up the brightest constellation in all English letters: James Joyce, T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and Wyndham Lewis, “on their own terms.” To put the work of these “Men of 1914” “in touch” with society and before an American audience. McLuhan’s rationale appears to have been that he saw and heard in the works of these “serious artists” a “detailed history of the future.”

In view of his survey, McLuhan sided with the serious artists — the Men of 1914. Unlike Dante, whom he implies was able to hold the same road as society, McLuhan held, following Lewis, that “in a mindless age, every insight takes the character of a lethal weapon.” Both the “man of goodwill” and “serious artist,” must be “the enemy of society.”