Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote Essay

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In the following essay on Jorge Luis Borges's Pierre Menard, Author of Quixote, Michael J. Wreen argues that Borges's story is a sustained parody presenting an ironic commentary on the process of creative activity as a necessary but ultimately impossible task.

In a recent article, "Once Is Not Enough?", I argued that a book word-for-word identical with Cervantes' Quixote wouldn't be a new Quixote, numerically distinct from Cervantes', if it were produced in the manner described in Borges' short story "Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote." Menard's novel would simply be Cervantes', I tried to show, although admittedly produced in a very odd way. But philosophical issues (such as the individuation of works of art) are one thing, literary interpretation quite another. In this paper, I'll be offering a comprehensive interpretation of Borges' story and arguing, against a number of critics, that "Pierre Menard" is philosophically correct...

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This section contains 230 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote Study Guide
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