Eco, Dickens, who else?

Robyn Starkey rohina at shaw.ca
Mon Feb 10 20:48:42 EST 2003


>Incidentally, do you know why Eco called it _The Name of the Rose_?
>It's to stop people forming preconceptions about the book before
>they've actually read it. If he'd called it, say, _Murder in the
>Monastery_, everyone would immediately form a mental picture of what
>the book is like, and a lot of people would avoid it for reasons that
>didn't actually apply (or read it and then blame the author because it
>wasn't what they expected). "The Name of the Rose", however, could
>mean any one of so many different things that preconceptive apparatus
>is paralysed with indecision, and the reader is forced to take the
>book on its own merits.

I think the name of the novel also had a lot to do with the way he was 
playing with language. In the original Italian there are a lot of puns and 
plays on words that revolve around the idea of the name of the rose. They 
didn't make it into the English version, because they naturally enough 
don't work in English. I think in Italian the title is much less 
counter-intuitive.

Robyn 

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