Turning Back the Clock: Hot Wars and Media Populism (Hardcover)

Hot Wars and Media Populism

By Umberto Eco, Alastair McEwen (Translator)

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 9780151013517, 384pp.

Publication Date: November 1, 2007



The time: 2000 to 2005, the years of neoconservatism, terrorism, the twenty-four-hour news cycle, the ascension of Bush, Blair, and Berlusconi, and the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. Umberto Eco's response is a provocative, passionate, and witty series of essays--which originally appeared in the Italian newspapers La Repubblica and L'Espresso--that leaves no slogan unexamined, no innovation unexposed. What led us into this age of hot wars and media populism, and how was it sold to us as progress? Eco discusses such topics as racism, mythology, the European Union, rhetoric, the Middle East, technology, September 11, medieval Latin, television ads, globalization, Harry Potter, anti-Semitism, logic, the Tower of Babel, intelligent design, Italian street demonstrations, fundamentalism, The Da Vinci Code, and magic and magical thinking.The famous author and respected scholar shows his practical, engaged side: an intellectual involved in events both local and global, a man concerned about taste, politics, education, ethics, and where our troubled world is headed.

Praise For Turning Back the Clock: Hot Wars and Media Populism


"The spirit of enlightenment breathes through the writings of Umberto Eco . . . [he] is an urbane, genial writer who brings calmness and clarity to every subject he treats." --Los Angeles Times

"Eco's double life as a theorist of communication and a practitioner of fiction makes him exceptionally well suited to entertain and inform . . . Eco is a master of saying what it is we can, with confidence, say, and he says it wonderfully." --San Francisco Chronicle