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Travels In Hyperreality Paperback – Jan 12 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 324 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Reprint edition (Jan. 12 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156913216
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156913218
  • Product Dimensions: 20.4 x 13.7 x 1.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #250,452 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 19 2001
Format: Paperback
i got this book because of the essay by which it is entitled. it is a great work, and a basic reading for those interested on the topics of hyperreality, simulated or thematized environments, and the like. quite contemporary tho Eco's work is Baudrillard's la precession des simulacres. so they are from the 70's and much more has been written on the topic, but these texts are, as i said, basic to understand all the rest. eco's work is quite openning ranging from xanaduswax museums, the theming of nature, etc. it is worthy.
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Format: Paperback
Many readers will probably be attracted to books like these after reading and enjoying Eco's novels, especially The Name of the Rose and Foucalt's Pendulum. If so, be warned. As I discovered, the Eco of the essay is NOT the Eco of the novels. Both Ecos are eccentric, clever and witty. However, the Eco of essays is a more radical and postmodern thinker. His topics can be seen by some as mundane. He's interested in pop culture and some of his theories are a tad obscure.
This collection is a series of loosely connected essays by Eco. It's an interesting book to read not cover-to-cover but to read an essay once in a while until the book is finished. That way the attitudes can sink in. The biggest fault I found with the book is certain essays to do with semiotics have arguments that are complex and hard to follow. This is understandable as they're taken from more specialised publications whereas in the novels, he strives to bring his ideas to the general public.
The essays I found to be most likeable are Travels in Hyperreality (about the proliferation of wax museums in the US and the general obsession with replicas in society), Reports from the Global Village (a series of essays on media), an analysis of Casablanca and In Praise of St Thomas (Eco's PhD was on Thomas so his views can be seen as fairly authoritative).
A good read but not brilliant.
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By Arthem on March 16 2003
Format: Paperback
Umberto Eco is clearly a genius - his fictional works testify to that. I assume his reputation as a semiologist is well earned (since I know little about the subject beyond what Walker Percy digested).
Unfortunately, I found "Travels in Hyperreality" to be a hastily pasted collection of observations and commentary that is not really worthy of Eco's growing portfolio. The book was sometimes interesting, but dry and tasteless. I thought the whole lot of it could be encapsulated in Eco's strange observations concerning "the wearing of blue jeans." That is, if you're really, really, really into Eco and want to soak up everything he says, then this book will not disappoint. If, on the other hand, you have limited time on your hands, then Eco's fictional works, or "Search for the Perfect Language," are far better temporal investments.
Perhaps I didn't get it, or perhaps it was a mistake reading much of it in a bar in Santa Clara, but I would assert that this is only a book for the Eco purist.
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Format: Paperback
Two essays are gems. First, the comparison of California/Getty Museum (hyperreality) with New Orleans. Reference frame provided by the not-yet-dead-traditions of W. Europe. Second, and best (from a scientist's standpoint), is the essay on Tomasso, especially the ending.
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