===About the Book=== Eco, freely admitting that he is responding to the themes of the symposium or conference in question, writes about symbolism, style, and function in literature, intertextual irony, three generations of anti-Americanism, paradox in Wilde, obsession in Joyce, and the political implications of the behavior of Ringo in 1939's Stagecoach. One comes to understand his mind is something like the library-maze in The Name of the Rose before blazes consumed it. He reveals his methods of stocking that library by meticulously researching and inventing the worlds about which he writes. His only deadline (and superstition about his writing) is that he must complete the manuscript by 5 January, his birthday. Any year will do.