Eco, Umberto

Eco, Umberto
born Jan. 5, 1932, Alessandria, Italy

Italian critic and novelist.

He has taught since 1971 at the University of Bologna. In The Open Work (1962), he suggested that some literature and modern music is fundamentally ambiguous and invites the audience to participate in the interpretive and creative process. He explored other areas of communication and semiotics in A Theory of Semiotics (1976), Semiotics and the Philosophy of Language (1984), and The Limits of Interpretation (1991). His novels include the erudite but best-selling murder mystery The Name of the Rose (1980; film, 1986), Foucault's Pendulum (1988), and The Island of the Day Before (1995).

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▪ Italian literary critic
born Jan. 5, 1932, Alessandria, Italy
 
 Italian literary critic, novelist, and semiotician (student of signs and symbols) who became internationally known for his novel Il nome della rosa (1980; The Name of the Rose).

      After receiving a Ph.D. from the University of Turin (1954), Eco worked as a cultural editor for Italian Radio-Television and also lectured at the University of Turin (1956–64). He then taught in Florence and Milan and finally, in 1971, assumed a professorial post at the University of Bologna. His initial studies and researches were in aesthetics, his principal work in this area being Opera aperta (1962; rev. ed. 1972, 1976; The Open Work), which suggests that in much modern music, Symbolist verse, and literature of controlled disorder (Franz Kafka (Kafka, Franz), James Joyce (Joyce, James)) the messages are fundamentally ambiguous and invite the audience to participate more actively in the interpretive and creative process. From this work he went on to explore other areas of communication and semiotics in such volumes as A Theory of Semiotics (1976) and Semiotics and the Philosophy of Language (1984), both written in English. Many of his prolific writings in criticism, history, and communication have been translated into various foreign languages, including La ricerca della lingua perfetta nella cultura europea (1993; The Search for the Perfect Language) and Kant e l'ornitorinco (1997; Kant and the Platypus). He edited the companion volumes Storia della bellezza (2004; History of Beauty) and Storia della bruttezza (2007; On Ugliness).

      The Name of the Rose—in story, a murder mystery set in a 14th-century Italian monastery but, in essence, a questioning of “truth” from theological, philosophical, scholarly, and historical perspectives—became an international best-seller. A film version, directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud, appeared in 1986. Eco continued to explore the connections between fantasy and reality in another best-selling novel, Il pendolo di Foucault (1988; Foucault's Pendulum). His subsequent fictional works include L'isola del giorno prima (1995; The Island of the Day Before) and La misteriosa fiamma della regina Loana (2004; The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana).

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Eco, Umberto — (1932– )    One of the world’s leading philosophers and a pioneer in the study of semiotics (the analysis of signs), Umberto Eco is that rarest of birds, a professor who is both internationally respected within the academy and widely read outside …   Historical Dictionary of modern Italy

  • Eco,Umberto — E·co (ĕʹkō), Umberto. Born 1932. Italian writer best known for his novels, including The Name of the Rose (1981). He has also written extensively on semiotics and British and American popular culture. * * * …   Universalium

  • Eco, Umberto — ► (n. 1932) Semiólogo y crítico literario italiano. Autor de obras dedicadas a la estética y, sobre todo, a la semiótica: Obra abierta (1962) y La estructura ausente (1968), entre otras. Ha publicado varias novelas, como El nombre de la rosa… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Eco, Umberto —  (1932–) Italian academic and novelist …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • Eco, Umberto — (Alessandria 1932 ) saggista, narratore, diffusore dello strutturalismo; semiologo; condirettore de “Il Marcatré”. collab./opere: “Il Verri” …   Dizionario biografico elementare del Novecento letterario italiano

  • Umberto Eco — (* 5. Januar 1932 in Alessandria, Piemont) ist ein italienischer Schriftsteller, Kolumnist, Philosoph, Medienwissenschaftler und wohl der bekannteste zeitgenössische Semiotiker. Durch seine Romane, allen voran …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Umberto Eco — Nacimiento 5 de enero de 1932 (79 años) Alessandria, Piamonte …   Wikipedia Español

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  • ECO (U.) — ECO UMBERTO (1932 ) Né à Alessandria, ville du nord de l’Italie, Umberto Eco fait ses études supérieures à Turin, où il soutient en 1954 une thèse de fin d’études sur l’esthétique chez saint Thomas d’Aquin. Il travaille d’abord comme assistant à… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Eco — (Umberto) (né en 1932) sémiologue et écrivain italien. Ses recherches portent sur la signification de l oeuvre d art: l OEuvre ouverte (1962). Romans: le Nom de la rose (1982), le Pendule de Foucault (1990), l île du jour d avant (1994) …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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