Eco, Umberto


July 3, 2022

Umberto Eco (Italian Umberto Eco; January 5, 1932, Alessandria, Piedmont, Italy - February 19, 2016, Milan, Lombardy, Italy) is an Italian scientist, philosopher, specialist in semiotics and medieval aesthetics, cultural theorist, literary critic, writer, publicist .


Umberto Eco was born in Alessandria (a small town in Piedmont, not far from Turin). His father, Giulio Eco, worked as an accountant and later fought in three wars. During World War II, Umberto and his mother, Giovanna, moved to a small village in the Piedmont mountains. Grandfather Eco was a foundling, and according to the practice adopted at that time in Italy, the surname was given to him by municipal employees. In the later years of Eco's life, a friend discovered in the Vatican library a list of abbreviations used by the Jesuits, in which ECO meant Ex Caelis Oblatus, that is, "bestowed by Heaven." Since then, Eco believed that the choice of the surname given to his grandfather was dictated by this. Giulio Eco was one of thirteen children in the family and wanted his son to receive a law degree, but Umberto entered the University of Turin to study medieval philosophy and literature, and graduated in 1954 (Bachelor of Philosophy). During his studies, Umberto became an atheist and left the Catholic Church. Umberto Eco worked on television, as a columnist for the largest newspaper Espresso (Italian L'Espresso), taught aesthetics and cultural theory at the universities of Milan, Florence and Turin. Privatdozent of Aesthetics (1961). Professor of semiotics at the University of Bologna (since 1975). Honorary Doctor of many foreign universities (in particular, Paris III (1989), Athens (1995), Moscow State University (1998), Jerusalem (2002), etc.). Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor (2003). Since September 1962 he was married to a German art teacher Renate Ramge. The couple had a son and a daughter. Eco died at his home in Milan on the evening of February 19, 2016 from pancreatic cancer, which he had been battling for two years. On February 23, 2016, a farewell ceremony was held at the Sforza Castle in Milan.

Scientific work

Umberto Eco has touched on a wide range of topics throughout a prolific scientific career. He was engaged in research of medieval and modern aesthetics, mass culture, developed