- The day after the fall of Khrushchev, the editors of Pravda, Izvestiia, the heads of the radio and television were replaced; the army wasn't called out. Today a country belongs to the person who controls communications.
- I don't miss my youth. I'm glad I had one, but I wouldn't like to start over.
- Semiotics is in principle the discipline studying everything which can be used in order to lie. If something cannot be used to tell a lie, conversely it cannot be used to tell the truth: it cannot in fact be used 'to tell' at all.
- There are magic moments, involving great physical fatigue and intense motor excitement, that produce visions of people known in the past. As I learned later from the delightful little book of the Abbe de Bucquoy, there are also visions of books as yet unwritten.
- Books are not made to be believed, but to be subjected to inquiry.
- I started to write [The Name of the Rose] in March of 1978, moved by a seminal idea. I wanted to poison a monk.
- In the United States, politics is a profession, whereas in Europe it is a right and a duty.
- To read fiction means to play a game by which we give sense to the immensity of things that happened, are happening, or will happen in the actual world. By reading narrative, we escape the anxiety that attacks us when we try to say something true about the world. This is the consoling function of narrative - the reason people tell stories, and have told stories from the beginning of time.
- Reflecting on these complex relationships between reader and story, fiction and life, can constitute a form of therapy against the sleep of reason, which generates monsters.
- After all, the cultivated person's first duty is to be always prepared to rewrite the encyclopaedia.
- A democratic civilization will save itself only if it makes the language of the image into a stimulus for critical reflection - not an invitation for hypnosis.
- I don't even have an e-mail address. I have reached an age where my main purpose is not to receive messages.