Jorge Luis Borges facts for kids
Jorge Luis Borges
Bust of Jorge Luis Borges, Buenos Aires, Argentina
|Born||Jorge Francisco Isidoro Luis Borges Acevedo
24 August 1899
Buenos Aires, Argentina
|Died||14 June 1986
|Occupation||Writer, poet, philosopher, translator, editor, critic, librarian|
Jorge Francisco Isidoro Luis Borges Acevedo (24 August 1899 – 14 June 1986) was an Argentine short-story writer, essayist, poet and translator, and a key figure in Spanish-language literature. His best-known books, Ficciones (Fictions) and El Aleph (The Aleph), published in the 1940s, are short stories interconnected by common themes, including dreams, labyrinths, philosophy, libraries, mirrors, fictional writers, and mythology. Borges' works have contributed to philosophical literature and the fantasy genre, and have been considered by some critics to mark the beginning of the magic realist movement in 20th century Latin American literature.
In 1961, he came to international attention when he received the first Formentor prize (Prix International). In 1971, he won the Jerusalem Prize. He dedicated his final work, The Conspirators, to the city of Geneva, Switzerland. He was influenced by authors such as Dante Alighieri, Miguel de Cervantes, Franz Kafka, H.G. Wells, Rudyard Kipling, Arthur Schopenhauer and G. K. Chesterton.
Born in a suburb of Buenos Aires, Borges later moved with his family to Switzerland in 1914, where he studied at the Collège de Genève. The family travelled widely in Europe, including Spain. On his return to Argentina in 1921, Borges began publishing his poems and essays in surrealist literary journals. He also worked as a librarian and public lecturer. In 1955, he was appointed director of the National Public Library and professor of English Literature at the University of Buenos Aires.
He became completely blind by the age of 55. Scholars have suggested that his progressive blindness helped him to create innovative literary symbols through imagination. By the 1960s, his work was translated and published widely in the United States and Europe. Borges himself was fluent in several languages.
Borges died of liver cancer on 14 June 1986, aged 86, in Geneva. His burial was preceded by an service at the Protestant Cathédrale de Saint Pierre on 18 June. With many Swiss and Argentine dignitaries present. After the funeral, Borges was laid to rest in Geneva's Cimetière de Plainpalais. His grave, marked by a rough-hewn headstone, is adorned with carvings derived from Anglo-Saxon and Old Norse art and literature.
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