My belated contribution to Freddie’s book club

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Will

Will writes from Washington, D.C. (well, Arlington, Virginia). You can reach him at willblogcorrespondence at gmail dot com.

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6 Responses

  1. I think it’s one of the major draws of the book actually that William has this intellectually “modern” character. This may or may not comment on the idea of the Renaissance being an anti-Catholic historical revisionism, but it makes sense that the High Middle Ages would contain a greater degree of intellectual and methodological diversity than the years immediately preceding the scientific revolution.

    A question: I haven’t read the book, but I’m wondering if the methodological atheism seemingly exhibited by Brother William isn’t wholly consistent with Thomism?Report

  2. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    If Eco wanted us to take William seriously as a man of the middle ages, he would have given William a different surname.Report

  3. Avatar RTod says:

    “But if a character becomes too familiar, the audience is (sometimes abruptly) reminded that this is a modern work of fiction, not the medieval manuscript Eco purportedly stumbled upon all those years ago.”

    I’m reading the book now as well, and I’m not sure that Eco’s design in to create for us a believably authentic 14th century experience. When I se the discussions between William and others, such as the abbot, I see arguments about faith and religion (and their place in society and governance) that are going on today. Perhaps this is what Eco’s story, in some ways, is about?

    Also, having WIlliam be an intellectually kick-ass Sherlock Holmes Monk makes for a good yarn.Report