The Garden of Forking Paths Essay

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The first paragraph of "The Garden of Forking Paths" acts as a frame to the body of the text, a firstperson confessional "document" written by Yu Tsun, a Chinese spy for the German Empire operating in England during the First World War. Ostensibly this framing paragraph serves to ground the confessional narrative in historical fact and provides the question to which Yu Tsun's "deposition" is supposedly an answer. The historical fact is the delay of a few days suffered in the British offensive on the Somme River in July, 1916. Borges (or more exactly, the "editor") cities Captain Liddell Hart's A History of the World War to the effect that "torrential rain caused this delay—which lacked any special significance." The reader assumes that Yu Tsun's "deposition" will prove (a) that "torrential rains" were not the decisive factor in the delay and—perhaps— (b) that the...

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This section contains 860 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Garden of Forking Paths Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Garden of Forking Paths from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.