Umberto Eco: A Classic of Semiotics?

Karin Wenz, Assistant Professor of English, University of Kassel

Has Umberto Eco become a classic of semiotics? In 1981, when M. Krampen et al. edited their Classics of Semiotics, Eco was still among the writers on the classics and not yet one of the classics of semiotics himself. More recently, an ever increasing number of publications on Eco's own semiotic writings seem to suggest that the author has now become a classic of semiotics himself. Since Eco has become world famous, many of his theoretical writings have appeared which are collages of his own earlier publications. It may still be too early to decide whether he will emerge as a classic of theoretical semiotics from these writings, but the enormous critical echo of his fictional semiotic writings testifies to the fact that Eco is a classic of semiotic literature of our times.

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