Umberto Eco

In the construction of Immortal Fame you need first of all a cosmic shamelessness

Interviews & Articles
Below are several interviews or interview-based articles about Eco; some are available as offsite links, and some have been transcribed to HTML format and placed online here at Porta Ludovica. Porta Ludovica does not mean to challenge the copyrights of any magazine or newspaper by uploading the text of an interview. The copyrights are exclusively held by the publication and/or the writer; they are online here so interested people may read articles that have long been regulated to the eldritch world of microfische. The magazine articles are all at least four months old and the newspaper articles are at least a month old; the contents of any article which is in a “current” publication will not be uploaded – in that case, I believe that you should purchase a copy of a the magazine and give them your support.
With this in mind, I would appreciate if people visiting this area of Porta Ludovica agree not to distribute the texts of these works. Please read them only for your own personal interest.


Superstar Professor
September 29, 1986, by Scott Sullivan
A basic article on Eco, focusing on his unusual status as an acadmic celebrity and on The Name of the Rose. It also contains some interesting information about the movie.

Return of Ecomania
March 6, 1989, by Otto Friedrich
A small article on the success of Foucault’s Pendulum in Italy, written before it was translated into English. It summarizes the plot, contains excerpts from a few Italian reviews, and contains a few of Eco’s comments.

Lighthearted Heavyweight / A Talk with Eco
, November 13, 1989, by Peter S. Prescott
A review of Foucault’s Pendulum coupled with a small excerpt from a conversation with Eco. The review is generally favorable, although a bit shallow, and the conversation excerpts are far too brief.

The Master of Semiotic Thrillers
U.S. News and World Report,
November 20, 1989, by Erica Goode
A short, but good, article on Foucault’s Pendulum. The article summarizes the results of a conversation between Eco and the writer, and so has several informative comments on the work by Eco himself.

Man Overboard
The New Yorker,
August 21, 1995, by Andrea Lee
A wonderful preview of The Island of the Day Before, including some commentary on Eco’s research and excerpts of a review with the author.

Eco Consciousness
November 1995, by Fernanda Eberstadt
A very nice interview with Eco, he discusses The Island of the Day Before and his attitudes about reading. A much better article than many of those above in “more serious” magazines.

Scholar-Novelist Umberto Eco Takes Readers to Another Era
Seattle Times,
December 1995, by John Sutherland
This article, based on an interview with Eco, discusses his three novels.

A Renaissance Man Spans Batman, Monks
Philadelphia Daily News,
January 3, 1997, by Ed Voves
A short interview with Eco.

The World According to Eco
March 1997, by Lee Marshall
An excellent interview with Eco about the Internet and its possibilities.

With Baudolino, Eco Returns to Romance Writing
La Repubblica,
September 11, 2000, by Laura Lilli
Eco first announced the name and topic of Baudolino at the Mantova literature festival in this interview with Laura Lilli. (Translated by Paul Verrocchio)

The Medieval Dream
Rome, 2001, by Gaither Stewart
A discussion of The Name of the Rose, monasteries and libraries, and the nature of power.


A Conversation on Information
Multimedia World, February 1995, by Patrick Cappock
An interview that focuses on Eco’s ideas about information and communication. Hosted at Martin Ryder’s Semiotics page.

Caught Between a Kant and a Platypus
Issues, December 12, 1996, by Paul Haacke
An interview with Eco at Brown University.

Deep Eco
December 12, 1996, by Vox Day
Vox Day, a science-fiction author and columnist for the Pioneer Press, interviews Eco at the Whitney Hotel in Minneapolis, on December 12, 1996.

Signs of the Times
The Guardian,
March 24, 1998, by Domenico Pacitti
Eco talks philosophy, semiotics, and Kant and the Platypus.

Con “Baudolino” Eco torna al romanzo
La Repubblica,
September 2000, by Laura Lilli
Eco discusses his next book, Baudolino. (Italian)

The Medieval Dream
December 15, 2000, by Gaither Stewart
This interview/article uses the monasteries and libraries of Italy as the basis for a discussion on writing and criticism.

Telling Tales: Umberto Eco on Truth, Fiction, and the Holy Grail
Borders Online,
November 2002, by Jessica Jernigan
Eco discusses Baudolino, storytelling, and a few playful facets of his complicated writing style.

–Allen B. Ruch
13 October 2006

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