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Reading Circle - Ficciones, March 2008

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Bruno
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PostPosted: Mon 03 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Sonia wrote:
Jeez, and even Ficciones drags for me sometimes! Maybe it's the translation, and maybe it's because this isn't the type of material I normally read anyway.

Maybe it's "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius". wink5 That story has too many citations and discusses a bunch of theories. The others, even the ones that look like essays *cough* Pierre Menard and Herbert Quain *cough* are an easier read. But there's a reason for Tlön Uqbar to be the first story in the book: in fact, two reasons there are for that.

The following lines aren't spoilers per se, as they do not specifically discuss facts in the plot of any story beyond vague alusions. However, they might in a sense influence your perception of the whole book. Therefore, it might be a good idea to read them only after you've read all stories from "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius" to "The Garden of Forking Paths".
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"Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius" spoiler inside:
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Sonia wrote:
I'm about ten pages into Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius, but just to keep everything straight I'm thinking of re-reading and taking a few notes so when discussion time comes I actually have something to discuss. grin

By all means, do so only if you really feel up to it. I'll make a quick revision of "Tlön, Uqbar" for the people who want to get in-depth on the ideas Borges exposes. The only requirement in this topic, however, is to enjoy the literature: the ideas. What I'm trying to say is, if you want an explanation, you'll have it, I promise, but for now you don't need any philosophical background.

I'm sure you don't need to have read a single line about Berkeley's idealism in order to be able to stare at the moonlight tonight and think to yourself, hlör u fang axaxaxas mlö, and wonder. And, believe me, the next morning you'll catch yourself making up verbal (or adjective) languages as you walk to the bus station, and when you realise what's going on in your mind's background, you'll curse Borges and smile.

Sonia wrote:
I do have The Aleph too, so maybe someday when I feel up to it I'll take a look. Why put the rest of this book to waste?

I definitely recommend it. wink5 And, like I said, that book will never be a waste: if you actually get tired of it, I'm still willing to buy it from you.


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Sonia
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PostPosted: Mon 03 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

bruno wrote:
I'm sure you don't need to have read a single line about Berkeley's idealism in order to be able to stare at the moonlight tonight and think to yourself, hlör u fang axaxaxas mlö, and wonder. And, believe me, the next morning you'll catch yourself making up verbal (or adjective) languages as you walk to the bus station, and when you realise what's going on in your mind's background, you'll curse Borges and smile.


You're good, Bruno. Wanna know why? Because the creation of those verbal and adjective languages has already happened! It's brilliant: I can see myself musing over this for the next few days, too.

bruno wrote:
I definitely recommend it. wink5 And, like I said, that book will never be a waste: if you actually get tired of it, I'm still willing to buy it from you.


lach1 I'll win either way!


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PostPosted: Thu 06 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

I'm in if you guys don't mind


Current LD goal(s): Have an SD with that cute little crow.
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Bruno
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PostPosted: Thu 06 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

By all means, James, we don't. :D I'm actually glad people are joining this project.

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Bruno
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PostPosted: Fri 07 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

I'd like to know how far has everyone got by now. smile Has anyone read "the Lottery in Babilon" so far? It is, in my opinion, one of the best stories ever written. What about "the Circular Ruins"?--- Anyone tried to read anything from the second book, like "Three Versions of Judas" or the "theme of the Hero and the Traitor"? What's everyone thinking of it so far? And, among those who still haven't started reading, who's planning to join us still? colgate

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PostPosted: Sat 08 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Though i am already caught up in a multitude of wonderful literature, I will do my best to find these books and begin reading. Reality manifested through thought and willed imagination? I'm in, and will begin reading as soon as possible.

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PostPosted: Sat 08 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Ok, I just placed the order online for collected fictions. The collection is surprisingly quite extensive. Anyone ever read Dream Tigers by the same author? It is apparently supposed to be pretty amazing.

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kTFox has successfully completed an LD4all Quest!
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PostPosted: Sat 08 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Ok, Now the right book is at the library. I'm going to go pick it up tomorrow and start reading it then.

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wnvoss
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PostPosted: Sat 08 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

I ordered the book last yesterday afternoon, it should be here sometime early next week. I can't wait!

EDIT: It arrived today! (well, friday night - we hadn't checked the mail).




Last edited by wnvoss on Sun 09 Mar, 2008; edited 1 time in total
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Petter
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PostPosted: Sat 08 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

I've just finished reading about that extreme library! It is a pretty extreme thought really: All we ever are gonna do/say is described. But everything is covered up in, and surrounded by, all other possible texts!

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PostPosted: Sun 09 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Hello everyone.
I promissed Bruno that i'm gonna join when i finally get the time. So here I am.
I've read Borges about three years ago. Before that, my readings almost exclusively consisted of Math and Physics books tounge1 Then my friend lent me a book by Borges: The Book of Sand. I had never seen a book written like that!! I got so curious that I went out and bought another Borges book: Ficciones.
One funny incident about this book. I lent it to a friend of mine. He read it, returned it to me, and said he didn't understand much. When i asked why, he replied: "well, who is this Pierre Menard for example? I've never heard of him!" :D
The title is Fictions. But with that aside, my friend is not to blame for not recognizing Borges' intention. As Bruno pointed out to in his first post here, Borges does not specify where reality ends and fictions begins. The lines are blurred.
I've dug up my copy and i'll start reading again. hopefully we get to discussions soon smile


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double-o-darko
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

I guess anything I say or do could from now on be considered a spoiler for this book because it has changed the way I now am- but I don't think I'm being too revealing here... Just finished the first half of the book (or first book, I suppose, technically). I am absolutely sucked in and have been avoiding doing anything else when possible just so I can sit around and soak up these Ficciones. I think "the Lottery in Babilon" and "the Circular Ruins" are definitely favorites so far. The others seemed to drag a little because of the dense nature of the stories (and the introduction of many characters and works, imaginary or real) but I still think there were some amazing ideas and concepts in there (especially the part about copulation and mirrors). Can't wait to really get into discussion about some of these ideas because this book is one of those works that makes you look at reality in a whole new way every time you finish a new story!

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double-o-darko
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Click here to see the hidden message (It might contain spoilers)


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Petter
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

I've actually taken myself in creating those verbal/adjective languages ! siiw Anyhow, I always ended with making too complicated sentences to be manageable for me to convert, and stop it. And start from the beginning again xD Well, it ain't that often it has happened, but well, I guess it may relate to the fact that I of some weird reasons have had a hard time feeling anything at all (pretty much exept frustration/loneliness at time) the last months/half year. It is really pretty depressing.

Anyways, I have just finished "Theme of the traitor and the hero now" ^^

Circular ruins spoiler
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Bruno
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Mar, 2008  Reply with quote

Welcome aboard, Eric, kT, Will, and Nadim. :D

Eric wrote:
The collection is surprisingly quite extensive.

He's written quite a lot. But why did you order the whole collection, rather than just Ficciones, then?

Eric wrote:
Anyone ever read Dream Tigers by the same author? It is apparently supposed to be pretty amazing.

Yes. Yes! It's really good! (I'm frankly biased when it come to Borges, so read my opinions with a grain of salt wink5). It's the same kind of imagery (and humour) you'll find in stories like "the Circular Ruins", "the Lottery in Babylon" and "theme of the Hero and the Traitor", but it's a really wild idea.

Petter wrote:
I've just finished reading about that extreme library! It is a pretty extreme thought really: All we ever are gonna do/say is described. But everything is covered up in, and surrounded by, all other possible texts!

It is a fabulous idea. yes I'll come back to the library in a future post. wink5

00-Darko wrote:
I guess anything I say or do could from now on be considered a spoiler for this book because it has changed the way I now am- but I don't think I'm being too revealing here...

lach1 I'm glad you enjoyed it that much!

00-Darko wrote:
I think "the Lottery in Babilon" and "the Circular Ruins" are definitely favorites so far.

Mine as well, at least in the first book. (From the second, highlights would be "theme of the Traitor and the Hero", "Three versions of Judas" and "the South").

00-Darko wrote:
The others seemed to drag a little because of the dense nature of the stories (and the introduction of many characters and works, imaginary or real) but I still think there were some amazing ideas and concepts in there (especially the part about copulation and mirrors).

Yeah, Borges can be a tad too academic at times, but he's got plenty of jaw-dropping ideas to expose.

00-Darko wrote:
Can't wait to really get into discussion about some of these ideas because this book is one of those works that makes you look at reality in a whole new way every time you finish a new story!

Hahaha! We sure shall discuss the ideas. I'll make a post tomorrow, and you of course can feel free to writing your thoughts anytime! :D

00-Darko wrote:
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Petter wrote:
Anyways, I have just finished "Theme of the traitor and the hero now" ^^

It's one of my favourite stories. It's rather simple, and doesn't make much of a fuss around its main idea, but it got me to dig into Irish history books and articles on exotic carnivalesque traditions, and then I would sketch up thoughts and drawings forever.

Petter wrote:
Circular ruins spoiler
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