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Google doodles for Jorge Luis Borges

Last updated on: August 24, 2011 12:06 IST

Google doodles for Jorge Luis Borges

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Search engine giant Google celebrates the writings of the Argentine author who would have been 112 today.

Had he been alive, Jorge Luis Borges would have been 112 years old today.

Born on August 24, 1899 in Buenos Aires, Borges turned to literature thanks to the books in his father's library.

Eventually when his family moved to Switzerland, he ended up learning German and French. He would later end up in Spain and join the Ultraist movement of avant-garde poets -- one that opposed modernism in Spanish poetry.

Spanish would also eventually become the language of his choice.

When he retuned to his homeland in 1921, he took the Ultraist movement there and in 1923 he published his first volume of poems Fervor de Buenos Aires, poemas or Fervour of Buenos Aires, Poems.

To make ends meet, he worked at the Buenos Aires Municipal Library. Since there were very few books in the library to catalogue, Borges would spend most of his time in the library's basement writing -- stories and articles -- and translating.

1938 was the year that would change things for the author. That year he lost his father who he was very close to. Later during the treatment of a severe head injury, Borges nearly died of septicaemia.

While recovering, Borges started experimenting with a style of writing that would become his trademark and one for which he would forever be known -- interconnected short stories with the oft-repeated themes of death and nightmare.

Borges' first story after his accident Pierre Menard, Author of The Quixote came in May 1939 and, somewhat unsurprisingly, explored the father-son relationship.

During World War II, Borges supported the Allied Forces, which did not go down well with dictator Juan Peron.

When Peron's regime fell, Borges became a professor of English and American literature at the University of Buenos Aires and was made the director of the national library.

As he began losing his sight, he sought to create innovative literary symbols.

Borges won the Formentor Prize along with the great absurdist playwright Samuel Beckett but was never awarded the Nobel, something that would distress him till the very end.
 
On June 14, 1986 Jorge Luis Borges died of liver cancer aged 86.

Over the years Google doodles have been commemorating important dates in history. Some of these, including the most recent one for Les Paul was an interactive video.


Image: Google Doodle for Jorge Luis Borges