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The stories of Jorge-Luis Borges
- Essay length: 6025 words
- Submitted: 24/05/2004
The first 200 words of this essay...
The stories of Jorge-Luis Borges are usually met with awe, perplexity, and the sensation of having discovered a densely woven secret. The awe, naturally, is derived from the inexhaustible resources of philological findings he unearths before our eyes, an eclectic compendium ranging from rare mystical texts, philosophical dialogues, and medieval excavations, to his own idiosyncratic literary proclivities: G.K. Chesterton, H.G. Wells, Stevenson, William Blake, Carlyle, Thomas de Quincey, Coleridge, Walt Whitman. The perplexity results from the density of his puzzle-shaped pieces, always delivered in his flippant, laconic style. These reactions are probably just the palpitations of a young heart and the vulnerability of a mind still not entirely immune from excitation. What is fantastical and utterly unique in Borges is the third reaction: that of having discovered the loose ends of an ell-encompassing secret. But again, these reactions may be entirely subjective.
Specifically with relation to time, memory, and concurrently, limitation of time, and oblivion, Borges lays out a philosophy of eternity that does not forget its mystical roots. Authors of traditional mystical texts inevitably disclaim their ability to fully explain their experience in words. Borges, on the other hand, approaches these timeless metaphysical perplexities, these "cosmic seizures", with a
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