Greatest Philosophical Achievement of Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose Essay

Greatest Philosophical Achievement of Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose

            The development of any area of study requires the research and contribution of different individuals that are interested and well verse in a specific subject. This kind of adage is also applicable in the field of philosophy wherein the theories and works of various philosophers paved the way for its evolution and enhancement. One of the most notable personalities who have contributed in philosophical development is Umberto Eco. By means of his works like The Name of the Rose he was able to influence realm of philosophical thinking.

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The Name of the Rose is an accomplished murder mystery novel. It has a protagonist that is similar with Sherlock Holmes wherein he is responsible in solving the mysteries and crimes that are present in the situations that he is in. This novel also gives importance to the allegory of the search for meaning. However, at the latter part of the novel the reader will experience some sort of depression because the search for meaning is continually characterized by doubt that every event is inevitably random (Undaimonia, 2008).

Eco succeeded in creating characters and events that perfectly describe his time during the 14th and 17th century. He has also enhanced semiotics or the study of his symbols as he is considered as a master in this area. He was able to make a book that gives its readers the freedom to infuse their own desire in the narrative. Furthermore, The Name of the Rose pointed out the conflict between philosophy and religion. The use of reason sometimes does not coincide with religious doctrine, which is featured in the novel (Undaimonia, 2008).

The greatest philosophical achievement of this novel is the way Umberto Eco was able to veer away from the traditional philosophical practices during his time. When almost all philosophers are searching for the truth Eco was able to emphasize in his novel “the only truth lies in learning to free ourselves from insane passion for the truth” (Undaimonia, 2008). This novel was able to highlight that most of the time comedy is more real than serious tragedy that entails people to take life in a light-hearted manner. People need to laugh and philosophy should be conducted with a smile and relevance to life (Undaimonia, 2008).


Undaimonia. (2008). Review: The Name of the Rose. Retrieved February 9, 2009, from