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Borges and Memory: Encounters with the Human Brain by Rodrigo Quian Quiroga

By Rodrigo Quian Quiroga

Based on specialists, Borges ’ s “ The backyard of Forking Paths, ” a
story from the 40s, prefigured hypertext and the Internet.
Quian Quiroga ’ s e-book unearths his wisdom of Borges ’ s work
and progressively, subtly, explains the way it pertains to neuroscience and
how the only pollinates or foretells the other.
Perhaps simply because his paintings is so just like Borges ’ s, Quian
Quiroga fathoms of the elemental issues operating through
“ Funes the Memorious ” which are crucial for the advance of
humanity: abstraction and forgetting. In his Naturalis historia , Pliny
the Elder had already said individuals with prodigious memory;
what to Pliny is a wondrous present, to Borges, who idea deeper
about the topic, may well develop into a poor curse.
To Quian Quiroga, the cyberworld during which most folk are
immersed these days is typically full of undigested
information, similar to Funes ’ s mind. To Quian Quiroga our world
occasionally serves us with a hodgepodge of rules, pictures, bits of
news, coming at us relentlessly, incoherently, and we turn out in a
virtual global that alienates us ever extra and takes us ever further
away from what fairly makes us human: mirrored image, the facility to
distance ourselves from our environment so that you can lightly ponder
and try and comprehend even a tiny element, the universe.

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Extra info for Borges and Memory: Encounters with the Human Brain

Example text

He reasoned that he would not have to remember something once it had been put in writing, just as one feels free to forget a telephone number after writing it in an address book. This method did not work, though, since he continued to see what he had written. He even tried, again fruitlessly, to throw away or burn the sheets where he had written his memories, as though the physical act of 11. , p. 69. 46 The Man Who Could Not Forget destroying the notes could erase them from his head. Finally the day came when he realized that the only way to erase unwanted memories was to elude them deliberately.

In Jorge Luis Borges, La rosa profunda (Buenos Aires: Emecé, 1975); The Unending Rose, in The Gold of the Tigers, trans. Alastair Reid (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1977). ) He would use them to note passages that he would like to reread, and often to relate them to passages in other books. The Fundación Internacional Jorge Luis Borges, run by María Kodama, treasures Borges’s private library, his universe. The fascination produced by studying those books is perhaps like the one felt by an archaeologist who has just found a hidden chamber in a temple or an engraving from an extinct civilization.

1 Luria obtained his psychology degree from the University of Kazan at the age of 19 and further pursued his interest in brain pathologies as he worked toward a medical degree that he earned a few years later. This multifaceted education, both scientific and clinical, put him in a privileged position to contribute an approach that would supersede the famous dichotomy between Wundt’s experimental psychology, which was rather removed from reality, and Dilthey’s phenomenology, which lacked scientific rigor.

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