Fictions (Penguin Modern Classics)

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9780141183848: Fictions (Penguin Modern Classics)

The most popular anthology of Jorge Luis Borges's short stories, Fictions is a wildly original and influential collection of fantastic tales, translated from the Spanish with an afterword by Andrew Hurley in Penguin Modern Classics.Jorge Luis Borges's Fictions introduced an entirely new voice into world literature. It is here that we find the astonishing accounts of 'Funes the Memorious', the man who can forget nothing; 'Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote', who recreates Miguel de Cervantes's epic word-for-word; a society run on the basis of an all-encompassing game of chance in 'The Lottery in Babylon'; the mysterious world of 'Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius' which seems to be supplanting our own ; and the 'Library of Babel', which contains every possible book in the whole universe. Here too are the philosophical detective stories and the haunting tales of Irish revolutionaries, gaucho knife fights and dreams within dreams which proved so influential (and yet impossible to imitate). This collection was eventually to bring Borges international fame; over fifty years later, it remains endlessly intriguing.Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986) was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. A poet, critic and short story writer, he received numerous awards for his work including the 1961 International Publisher's Prize (shared with Samuel Beckett). He has a reasonable claim, along with Kafka and Joyce, to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century.If you enjoyed Fictions, you might like Italo Calvino's The Complete Cosmicomics, also available in Penguin Modern Classics.'Hurley's efforts at retranslating Borges are not anything but heroic. His visions are clear, elegant, crystalline'Ilan Savans, The Times Literary Supplement'One of the most memorable artists of our age'Mario Vargas Llosa

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Review:

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

About the Author:

Borges was born in Buenos Aires in 1899. A poet, critic and short story writer, he received numerous awards for his work including the 1961 International Publisher's Prize (shared with Samuel Beckett). He died in 1986. He has a reasonable claim, with Kafka and Joyce, to be the most influential writer of the 20th Century. Andrew Hurley is Professor of English at the University of Puerto Rico in San Juan. He has translated works by Borges, Padilla and Arenas.

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The most popular anthology of Jorge Luis Borges s short stories, Fictions is a wildly original and influential collection of fantastic tales, translated from the Spanish with an afterword by Andrew Hurley in Penguin Modern Classics. Jorge Luis Borges s Fictions introduced an entirely new voice into world literature. It is here that we find the astonishing accounts of Funes the Memorious , the man who can forget nothing; Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote , who recreates Miguel de Cervantes s epic word-for-word; a society run on the basis of an all-encompassing game of chance in The Lottery in Babylon ; the mysterious world of Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius which seems to be supplanting our own; and the Library of Babel , which contains every possible book in the whole universe. Here too are the philosophical detective stories and the haunting tales of Irish revolutionaries, gaucho knife fights and dreams within dreams which proved so influential (and yet impossible to imitate). This collection was eventually to bring Borges international fame; over fifty years later, it remains endlessly intriguing. Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986) was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. A poet, critic and short story writer, he received numerous awards for his work including the 1961 International Publisher s Prize (shared with Samuel Beckett). He has a reasonable claim, along with Kafka and Joyce, to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. If you enjoyed Fictions, you might like Italo Calvino s The Complete Cosmicomics, also available in Penguin Modern Classics. Hurley s efforts at retranslating Borges are not anything but heroic. His visions are clear, elegant, crystalline Ilan Savans, The Times Literary Supplement One of the most memorable artists of our age Mario Vargas Llosa. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141183848

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, Fictions, Jorge Luis Borges, Andrew Hurley, The most popular anthology of Jorge Luis Borges' short stories, "Fictions" is a wildly original and influential collection of fantastic tales, translated from the Spanish with an afterword by Andrew Hurley in "Penguin Modern Classics". Jorge Luis Borges' "Fictions" introduced an entirely new voice into world literature. It is here that we find the astonishing accounts of 'Funes the Memorious', the man who can forget nothing; 'Pierre Menard, Author of the "Quixote"', who recreates Miguel de Cervantes' epic word-for-word; a society run on the basis of an all-encompassing game of chance in 'The Lottery in Babylon'; the mysterious world of 'Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius' which seems to be supplanting our own; and the 'Library of Babel', which contains every possible book in the whole universe. Here too are the philosophical detective stories and the haunting tales of Irish revolutionaries, gaucho knife fights and dreams within dreams which proved so influential (and yet impossible to imitate). This collection was eventually to bring Borges international fame; over fifty years later, it remains endlessly intriguing. Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986) was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. A poet, critic and short story writer, he received numerous awards for his work including the 1961 International Publisher's Prize (shared with Samuel Beckett). He has a reasonable claim, along with Kafka and Joyce, to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. If you enjoyed "Fictions", you might like Italo Calvino's "The Complete Cosmicomics", also available in "Penguin Modern Classics". "Hurley's efforts at retranslating Borges are not anything but heroic. His visions are clear, elegant, crystalline". (Ilan Savans, "The Times Literary Supplement"). "One of the most memorable artists of our age". (Mario Vargas Llosa). Bookseller Inventory # B9780141183848

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The most popular anthology of Jorge Luis Borges s short stories, Fictions is a wildly original and influential collection of fantastic tales, translated from the Spanish with an afterword by Andrew Hurley in Penguin Modern Classics. Jorge Luis Borges s Fictions introduced an entirely new voice into world literature. It is here that we find the astonishing accounts of Funes the Memorious , the man who can forget nothing; Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote , who recreates Miguel de Cervantes s epic word-for-word; a society run on the basis of an all-encompassing game of chance in The Lottery in Babylon ; the mysterious world of Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius which seems to be supplanting our own; and the Library of Babel , which contains every possible book in the whole universe. Here too are the philosophical detective stories and the haunting tales of Irish revolutionaries, gaucho knife fights and dreams within dreams which proved so influential (and yet impossible to imitate). This collection was eventually to bring Borges international fame; over fifty years later, it remains endlessly intriguing. Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986) was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. A poet, critic and short story writer, he received numerous awards for his work including the 1961 International Publisher s Prize (shared with Samuel Beckett). He has a reasonable claim, along with Kafka and Joyce, to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. If you enjoyed Fictions, you might like Italo Calvino s The Complete Cosmicomics, also available in Penguin Modern Classics. Hurley s efforts at retranslating Borges are not anything but heroic. His visions are clear, elegant, crystalline Ilan Savans, The Times Literary Supplement One of the most memorable artists of our age Mario Vargas Llosa. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141183848

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