Jorge Luis Borges Writing Styles in The Aleph

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The Story's Epigraphs

The two epigraphs that precede "The Aleph" serve as introductions to the story's plot as well as short commentaries on its issues. The first, from Shakespeare's Hamlet, is said by the title character to his friends Rosencrantz and Guildenstern: "O God! I could be bound in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space." Hamlet's meaning here is (as he later says), "There is nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so." By this logic, Hamlet argues that "Denmark's a prison." Here, however, Borges imagines Hamlet's lament literally: how might a man in a nutshell call himself "a King of infinite space?" Borges's story responds to (if not answers) this question through the idea of the Aleph, for its existence in the story forces the reader to consider the proposition that there are an infinite number of points in space and, therefore, that...

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This section contains 534 words
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Buy The Aleph Study Guide
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The Aleph from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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