Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986)

Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986)

Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986) Argentina A Quick Overview Born August 24, 1899; died June 14, 1986 Considered one of the foremost literary figures of the 20th century. Best-known in the English speaking world for his short stories and essays also a poet, critic, and translator.

Influenced by authors such as Dante Alighieri, Jonathan Swift, Franz Kafka, and Rudyard Kipling. Life of Jorge Luis Borges Lived most of his life in Buenos Aires Fluent in both Spanish and English Began to lose his eyesight in his 30s Completely blind by 55 Lost ability to read without his mothers help 1938 Suffered a severe head injury which

affected his speech and marked the beginning of his most productive writing Shift in style to ironical and paradoxical dreamworld with own language and symbols Died of liver cancer Purpose Borges's fictional universe was born from his vast and esoteric readings in literature, philosophy, and theology. He sees man's search for meaning in an infinite

universe as a fruitless effort. In the universe of energy, mass, and speed of light, Borges considers the central riddle time, not space. "He believed in an infinite series of times, in a growing, dizzying net of divergent, convergent and parallel times. Popular Borges Motifs: The Labyrinth and The Mirror Borges told in an interview that when he was a boy, he found an engraving of the seven wonders

of the world, one of which portrayed a circular labyrinth. It frightened him and the maze has been one of his recurrent nightmares. The maze often symbolizes his perception of free will and provides a non linear quality to his work. Another recurrent image is the mirror, which reflects different identities. The idea for the short story 'Borges y yo came from

the double, who was looking at him - the alter ego, the other I. On Time and Destiny: "Our destiny is not horrible because of its unreality; it is horrible because it is irreversible and ironbound. Time is the substance I am made of. Time is a river that carries me away, but I am the

river; it is a tiger that mangles me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire that consumes me, but I am the fire. The world, alas, is The Circular Ruins: Themes and Symbols The vain attempt to establish order in a chaotic universe

Infinite regression All people are one Symbol of the labyrinth: Circular Ruins Wandering under the absurd allusion of having understood a chaotic and And he left off dreaming about you Through the Looking Glass meaningless world

The Circular Ruins As We Read: 1. Circle any circular imagery 2. Answer questions in the pauses between paragraphs 3. Underline any vocabulary words you do And he left off dreaming about you not know.

Through the Looking Glass Vocabulary Share As a table group, choose unfamiliar vocabulary words that you will work on together 2 per table group member. Divide them up and use your mobile devices to find a brief definition or synonym for each. Share and write in all ten, either at the end or above the word within the story (whichever you prefer). Circular Ruins: Analysis 1. What function and importance

does the setting have on the story? Identify detailed descriptions and discuss the impact on the story as a whole. 2. Identify circular imagery. How does this imagery develop a theme?

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