20 february, 2016
European author and philosopher Umberto Eco dies
Author: Sergey Markov, no comments
European and Italian philosopher and author died. His death becoming one of the most important piece of news in European media is a reflection of respect towards intellect in Europe. As a writer, starting from ‘The Name of Rose’, he became famous by this intellectual detective from Medieval monks’ life. It was a breakthrough of the philosopher into the mass culture that fascinated all the philosophers. Many of them would dream to follow this path. An attempt to sell an intellectual product to a mass reader using a flashy cover is one of the trends. In Russian culture, for instance, historian Oles Buzina wrote essentially scientific texts in the provocative mockery genre. Then he was murdered by Neo-nazis. Soon philosophers will start singing their works – that’s the way the contemporary world wags. And they will be faced with assassination attempts, as their ideas have a social value.
Eco was a Middle Age expert specializing in well-known Medieval philosopher Thomas Aquinas, the most famous scholasticism classic author. I’d like to remind, that scholasticism is an attempt to know God by reason and to construct a logical system of theology. Nowadays it is evident that scholasticism and religion diverged, but the former became a milestone of Europe’s transition towards science, technology, and, consequently, to present-day society characterized by material wealth. As for philosophy, Eco focused on semiotics, which is, in my opinion, a dead-end track of philosophy dealing with the language in the prejudice of social existence of a human being. But, probably, similarly to scholasticism that became a bridge to science, semiotics would enable to forge, for example, a new universal way of communication.
Respect to Umberto Eco’s personality and work that manifested in his death being among top world news headlines is an attempt of educated Europeans to apologize to each other for the domination of vulgarity and asocial behavior in modern culture.
And I invite you, dear reader, to read ‘The Name of Rose’, ‘Foucault’s Pendulum’ or another philosophic book of any author as a sign of respect for Umberto Eco. Philosophy is a wisdom of centuries. While almost all the outstanding heads of corporations and great leaders considered themselves, first of all, philosophers. Philosopher is the highest level of development in each profession.