"Eco's essays read like letters from a friend, trying to share something he loves with someone he likes.... Read this brilliant, enjoyable, and possibly revolutionary book." -George J. Leonard, San Francisco Review of Books
"... a wealth of insight and instruction." -J. O. Tate, National Review
"If anyone can make [semiotics] clear, it's Professor Eco.... Professor Eco's theme deserves respect; language should be used to communicate more easily without literary border guards." -The New York Times
"The limits of interpretation mark the limits of our world. Umberto Eco's new collection of essays touches deftly on such matters." -Times Literary Supplement
"It is a careful and challenging collection of essays that broach topics rarely considered with any seriousness by literary theorists." -Diacritics
Umberto Eco focuses here on what he once called "the cancer of uncontrolled interpretation"-that is, the belief that many interpreters have gone too far in their domination of texts, thereby destroying meaning and the basis for communication.