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The Aesthetics of Thomas Aquinas
by Umberto Eco
The well-known Italian semiotician and novelist Umberto Eco discloses for the first time to English-speaking readers the unsuspected richness, breadth, complexity, and originality of the aesthetic theories advanced by the influential medieval thinker Thomas Aquinas, heretofore known principally as a scholastic theologian. Inheriting his basic ideas and conceptions of art a ...more
Paperback, 302 pages
Published October 15th 1988 by Harvard University Press
(first published 1956)
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Sep 14, 2011 Meghan rated it really liked it
Umberto Eco's reading of Aquinas is sympathetic, far from the extremes of uncritical Thomist fanpersonship (which is how he characterizes vast swathes of the existing literature at the time of writing in 1956; even the neo-Thomists he chooses to cite receive significant pushback) or offhand kneejerk dismissal of all things medieval, or in fact everything written about aesthetics before 1954. He teases fascinating ideas out of superficially unprepossessing material: Aquinas's ideas about beauty a ...more
An exceptional book that provides a great incite into both Aquinas' understanding of the concept of beauty as a transcendental name of God, but it is also a thorough examination of the psychological framework in which desire operates relative to truth and goodness.
Umberto Eco was an Italian writer of fiction, essays, academic texts, and children's books, and certainly one of the finest authors of the twentieth century. A professor of semiotics at the University of Bologna, Eco’s brilliant fiction is known for its playful use of language and symbols, its astonishing array of allusions and references, and clever use of puzzles and narrative inventions. His pe ...moreMore about Umberto Eco...