‘El Aleph’ / ‘The Aleph’, by Jorge Luis Borges

My Spanish has never been up to reading this in the original, although I continue to cherish the edition of the collection that I bought in Mexico City in the late ‘90s. The humour and profundity in this story – in which the protagonist encounters, in a friend’s cellar, a point in space containing all other points; a point from which he can see everything in the universe, including you, the reader – continues to dazzle. A trip to Buenos Aire five years ago became a Borges pilgrimage, although I regret not visiting Garay Street where this story is set.

First published in the Argentine journal Sur in 1945. First published in English in The Aleph and Other Stories, Jonathan Cape, 1971. Currently available in The Aleph, Penguin Modern Classics, 2000 and Collected Fictions, Viking, 1998

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