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Borges: Collected Fictions (original 1998; edition 1999)

by Jorge Luis Borges

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3,607421,460 (4.6)95
Member:Jeefrs
Title:Borges: Collected Fictions
Authors:Jorge Luis Borges
Info:Penguin (Non-Classics) (1999), Paperback
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Collected Fictions by Jorge Luis Borges (1998)

  1. 30
    Fictions by Jorge Luis Borges (Carnophile)
    Carnophile: While Ficciones is a subset of Collected Fictions, it is nice to have two translations of the same material. Each translator captures nuances the other misses.
  2. 00
    The Unimaginable Mathematics of Borges' Library of Babel by William Goldbloom Bloch (bertilak)
  3. 00
    The Complete Stories of J. G. Ballard by J. G. Ballard (ateolf)
  4. 00
    Cyclonopedia: Complicity with Anonymous Materials by Reza Negarestani (S_Meyerson)
  5. 12
    Journey to the East by Hermann Hesse (CGlanovsky)
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» See also 95 mentions

English (41)  Spanish (1)  All languages (42)
Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
Narrated by George Guidall. Well, if it weren't for George Guidall reading it, I wouldn't have finished! And even then, Borges is way over my head. Was just trying to get some literary atmosphere before my trip to Argentina... ( )
  Salsabrarian | Feb 2, 2016 |
Hurley's translation can be awkward on occasion (the last line of "The Book of Sand" makes me wince every time) but having all of Borges together in one volume is invaluable. ( )
  saltmanz | Feb 2, 2016 |
High quality work. ( )
  kimberwolf | Jan 16, 2016 |
Borges was a genius. Other insightful observations of mine include 'the sun is hot' and 'pizza tastes good'. ( )
  BooksForDinner | Jan 15, 2016 |
There are some really great deep stories in this collection and then there are others that sent me to sleep, a real mixed bag ( )
  BookWormM | Jan 15, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jorge Luis Borgesprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Guidall, GeorgeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hurley, AndrewTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In 1517, Fray Bartolomé de las Casas, feeling great pity for the Indians who grew worn and lean in the drudging infernos of the Antillean gold mines, proposed to Emperor Charles V that Negroes be brought to the isles of the Caribbean, so that they might grow worn and lean in the drudging infernos of the Antillean gold mines.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0140286802, Paperback)

Although Jorge Luis Borges published his first book in 1923--doling out his own money for a limited edition of Fervor de Buenos Aires--he remained in Argentinian obscurity for almost three decades. In 1951, however, Ficciones appeared in French, followed soon after by an English translation. This collection, which included the cream of the author's short fictions, made it clear that Borges was a world-class (if highly unclassifiable) artist--a brilliant, lyrical miniaturist, who could pose the great questions of existence on the head of pin. And by 1961, when he shared the French Prix Formentor with Samuel Beckett, he seemed suddenly to tower over a half-dozen literary cultures, the very exemplar of modernism with a human face.

By the time of his death in 1986, Borges had been granted old master status by almost everybody (except, alas, the gentlemen of the Swedish Academy). Yet his work remained dispersed among a half-dozen different collections, some of them increasingly hard to find. Andrew Hurley has done readers a great service, then, by collecting all the stories in a single, meticulously translated volume. It's a pleasure to be reminded that Borges's style--poetic, dreamlike, and compounded of innumerable small surprises--was already in place by 1935, when he published A Universal History of Iniquity: "The earth we inhabit is an error, an incompetent parody. Mirrors and paternity are abominable because they multiply and affirm it." (Incidentally, the thrifty author later recycled the second of these aphorisms in his classic bit of bookish metaphysics, "Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Teris.") The glories of his middle period, of course, have hardly aged a day. "The Garden of the Forking Paths" remains the best deconstruction of the detective story ever written, even in the post-Auster era, and "Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote" puts the so-called death of the author in pointed, hilarious perspective.

But Hurley's omnibus also brings home exactly how consistent Borges remained in his concerns. As late as 1975, in "Avelino Arredondo," he was still asking (and occasionally even answering) the same riddles about time and its human repository, memory: "For the man in prison, or the blind man, time flows downstream as though down a slight decline. As he reached the midpoint of his reclusion, Arredondo more than once achieved that virtually timeless time. In the first patio there was a wellhead, and at the bottom, a cistern where a toad lived; it never occurred to Arredondo that it was the toad's time, bordering on eternity, that he sought." Throughout, Hurley's translation is crisp and assured (although this reader will always have a soft spot for "Funes, the Memorious" rather than "Funes, His Memory.") And thanks to his efforts, Borgesians will find no better--and no more pleasurable--rebuttal of the author's description of himself as "a shy sort of man who could not bring himself to write short stories." --James Marcus

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:08 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

The works of an Argentinian writer who took the detective story and turned it into metaphysics. They range from the 1935 A Universal History of Iniquity, a series of biographies of reprehensible evildoers, to the surrealistic August 25, 1983 in which Borges meets himself as an old man.… (more)

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