From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
- "Wanting connections, we found connections -- always, everywhere, and between everything." Umberto Eco, Foucault's Pendulum.
The novel is full of esoteric references to the Kabbalah, alchemy and conspiracy theory, so many that critic and novelist Anthony Burgess has suggested that it needed an index. The title of the book derives from an actual pendulum designed by the French physicist Léon Foucault to demonstrate the rotation of the earth.
Eco took the premise from this book from a short tale by Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges called "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius". It is not the first time Eco has made reference to Borges, as the character of Jorge de Burgos, the blind monk inThe Name of the Rose, is based on Borges, and the library is clearly based on another tale by the same writer, "La biblioteca de Babel".