The Name of the Rose Historical Context

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While The Name of the Rose is set in the fourteenth century in an unnamed Italian abbey, it may also be read as allegory of Western culture in general, and Italy in the 1970s, specifically. David Richter in his essay, "The Mirrored World: Form and Ideology in Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose" argues that whether the reader associates Emperor Louis with the USSR and Pope John XXII with the United States or the reverse, Eco seems to be concerned "with the impact of their struggle on the three billion people elsewhere in nations that might have preferred to remain unaligned . . ." The cold war, reaching its height during the years that Eco wrote the novel, deeply influenced the writer, and it is little wonder that the confrontation between the papal legation and the Franciscans is so heated.

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This section contains 507 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Name of the Rose Study Guide
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The Name of the Rose from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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