The Aleph Essay

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In the following essay excerpt, Elia explores the influence of Islamic mysticism permeating Borges's work, particularly in "The Aleph" and "The Zahir."

Studies of Jorge Luis Borges's work invariably highlight the wealth of philosophical and theological influences that underlie his œuvre. Yet a search through the bibliography tracing these sources reveals disappointingly few titles elaborating on what strikes me as one of the major threads running through many of his works: Islamic mysticism. The paucity of such studies is especially surprising when one considers that Borges himself frequently referred to Islam and Islamic thinkers both in his written work and lectures at various academic fora. In Seven Nights, the series of public lectures originally given in Buenos Aires, he devotes a full chapter to a discussion of The Thousand and One Nights, claiming that the first translation of this collection was "a major event for all of European...

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This section contains 3,525 words
(approx. 9 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Aleph Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Aleph from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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