Its enormous influence on writers aside, Ficciones has also--perhaps more importantly--changed the way that we read. Borges's Pierre Menard, for instance, undertakes the most audacious project imaginable: to create not a contemporary version of Cervantes's most famous work but the Quixote itself, word for word. This second text is "verbally identical" to the original, yet, because of its new associations, "infinitely richer"; every time we read, he suggests, we are in effect creating an entirely new text, simply by viewing it through the distorting lens of history. "A book is not an isolated being: it is a relationship, an axis of innumerable relationships," Borges once wrote in an essay about George Bernard Shaw. "All men who repeat one line of Shakespeare are William Shakespeare," he tells us in "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius." In this spirit, Borges is not above impersonating, even quoting, himself.
It is hard, exactly, to say what all of this means, at least in any of the usual ways. Borges wrote not with an ideological agenda, but with a kind of radical philosophical playfulness. Labyrinths, libraries, lotteries, doubles, dreams, mirrors, heresiarchs: these are the tokens with which he plays his ontological games. In the end, ideas themselves are less important to him than their aesthetic and imaginative possibilities. Like the idealist philosophers of Tlön, Borges does not "seek for the truth or even for verisimilitude, but rather for the astounding"; for him as for them, "metaphysics is a branch of fantastic literature." --Mary Park --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Take the most imaginative story you ever read, put it on drugs and amp it up with steroids and you have the kind of stuff that Borges achieves with Ficciones.Published 10 days ago by Hamdy Elgammal
Purchased this for a Fiction Writers' Workshop, required by instructor, and my first reading of the works of Jorge Luis Borges. Read morePublished 23 days ago by D Jean Schmidt
Intelligent, whimsical, and brilliant! Perusing the literature of Latin American (if there is such a general category) is highly rewarding with Borges.Published 4 months ago by Harry Haller
This compilation of writing is thought provoking. I had read some of it once before and it still blows my mind. Read morePublished 7 months ago by David Meidinger
This was an assigned book for the discussion group I belong to. Each person was given one short story to present, and we were encouraged to read the other stories assigned in... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Julia C. Johnson
Hard to find weaknesses here. A collection of stories that I have yet to find an equal to. The stories are nothing short of amazing.Published 10 months ago by BronxRev
Even as a child, the Argentinian master storyteller Jorge Luis Borges lived among books and various languages -- myths, legends and literature from many civilizations and cultures:... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Glenn Russell
A fantastic introduction to this mans work which i have only just discovered through a friend. Much more to discover for sure.Published 11 months ago by G. Fleury
These stories reveal Borges at his best, and the prodigious influence and literary value of these works are beyond dispute by now, I'll merely comment on the edition. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Nuri K