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Seven Nights

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4.33 of 5 stars 4.33  ·  rating details  ·  831 ratings  ·  65 reviews
The incomparable Borges delivered these seven lectures in Buenos Aires in 1977; attendees were treated to Borges’ erudition on the following topics: Dante’s The Divine Comedy, Nightmares, Thousand and One Dreams, Buddhism, Poetry, The Kabbalah, and Blindness.
Paperback, 128 pages
Published July 30th 2009 by New Directions (first published 1977)
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Brian
This was good. It's seven lectures that Borges gave in seven nights in Buenos Aires in 1977 (that's a lot of sevens). But it felt more like it was me an Borges sitting in a small room across from each other. He started talking to me about The Divine Comedy Inferno; Purgatorio; Paradiso and urged me to shed my fears and read the book. He said I would greatly be enriched. So I told him ok, I will. I was a still a bit intimidated by his presence and at that point would have stuck my hand in boiling...more
Léonard Gaya
Este librito es magnífico.

Hacia 1977, Borges pronunció siete conferencias en el Coliseo de Buenos Aires, que quedan aquí transcritas. Aquí se descubre a Borges en su manera de hablar, siempre amena, aunque hable de temas eruditos, a veces difíciles de entender (la literatura, el cuerpo). A mi me ha parecido oír su voz tranquila y, a menudo, risueña.

La primera trata de la "Divina Comedia" de Dante y es, tal vez, el mejor elogio que he podido leer sobre esta obra. Dice Borges: "La Comedia es un li...more
R.
Finished this on my birthday. Read one chapter a day for a week--not the author's recommended method, but the obvious one. Like taking a night class. His voice, ideas echoed in my head and had an effect on some of my browsing choices for the next few weeks.

Actually, it's the translator's voice, isn't it? The lecture-transcriptionist's voice.

Borgesian, that.
Masumeh

خواندنش مثل شب نشینی با پیرمرد بسیار دانایی است که شیرین سخن می گوید و بسیار بسیار می داند. هر از چند گاهی این حجم دانش متعجبت می کنی سپس تحسینت را برمی انگیزد.گاه البته آن همه ارجاعات تاریخی و فلسفی و...باعث میشوند فکر کنی هیچ نمی دانی و حس سرخوردگی کنی که باز شیرینی و عمق سخن پیرمرد تو را سر ذوق می آورد. سه تا سخنرانی اش را در مورد هزار و یکشب،بودا و قباله بیشتر از بقیه دوست داشتم. بخصوص هزار و یکشب و توصیف مردمانم از زبان بورخس. .

خرداد 93
Rise
A transcription of Borges lectures originally delivered in Buenos Aires. Lit-crit without the academic pom-poms. Playful takes on seven subjects: Dante's Commedia, dreams and nightmares, the endless pleasures of The Thousand and One Nights, Buddhism, poetry, the Kabbalah, and blindness. I imagine myself attending these lectures (in English) and turning the ideas over in my mind before going to sleep. Perhaps I will sleep peacefully knowing that the next night's lecture will be another food for t...more
Bastet
Siete noches es uno de mis libros de cabecera, de vez en cuando releo alguno de los textos, sobre todo "Las mil y una noches" y "La Divina Comedia", mis favoritos.
Borges dictó numerosas conferencias a lo largo de su vida. Las siete reunidas en este libro, magistrales, condensan la esencia de su pensamiento y son una prueba palpable de la lucidez de este escritor extraordinario. Cuánto me hubiera gustado ser una de sus oyentes y lectoras.
Imprescindible para los admiradores de Borges.
Stela

Seven Nights gathers seven lectures delivered by Borges in Buenos Aires at the Teatro Coliseo, between June and August 1977. As usual, the erudition is overwhelming, the subjects enthralling, the interpretation original and the passion catching. Most of all, they offer, as usual, keys for reading not only the classics but also Borges’s works, revealing his obsessions, his views and his literary games.

The first conference is dedicated to his book of all books, The Divine Comedy, which can be rea...more
umberto
Reading this compact book of Jorge Luis Borges's seven lectures delivered in 1977 in Buenos Aires was something entertaining and informative due to his vast knowledge and in-depth understanding on each lecture topic. Nowadays his name might be less popular, few readers might not be keen on reading his works; indeed, he has long been acclaimed as one of the great writers in Latin America. Please visit this website to know him a little more:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jorge_Lu..., then we may bor...more
ArEzO.... Es
قسمتی از مقدمه ی کتاب هفت شب با بورخس:
(( هفت سخنرانی ی گرد آوردی شده در این مجلد را بورخس در تیاتروکولیسبوی بوئنوس آیرس، در فواصل بین ژوئن تا اوت 1977 ایراد کرده است... این سخنرانی ها به طور همه جانبه ای ضبط شدند و مدتی بعد به صورت نوارهای غیر مجاز به بازار آمدند، و به شکل مثله شده ای در ضمیمه ادبی یکی از روزنامه های بوئنوس آیرس به چاپ رسیدند. بعدها، بورخس طی دوره ای دو ساله، با همکاری بارتولومیو، نسخه ای از آن سخنرانی ها را برای چاپ مورد تصحیح همه جانبه قرار داد.))
سخنرانی ها در هفت شب و هفت موض...more
J.
Sep 21, 2011 J. rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers
Borges believes in intersecting continua; the dreamer who writes the story that is the dream of the writer who envisions the reality that is after all, only a dream. He believes that when writing or when dreaming we are simply functioning on different planes, and that 'real life' may be only the most useful, or most convincing of these at a given moment. He believes that somebody may have dreamed us.

He believes a lot of things that cheerfully contradict each other, and has no problem with the f...more
Rafael
Sentimos la poesía como sentimos la presencia de una mujer, escribe Borges. Y más adelante: ¿a qué diluirla en otras palabras, que sin duda serán más débiles que nuestros sentimientos?
Tropecé con esta frase, releyendo la conferencia sobre La Poesía en el libro de Siete Noches. Me llama la atención porque el mismo Borges escribe en el prólogo de la colección “Jorge Luís Borges. Biblioteca Personal”: "Un Libro es una cosa entre las cosas, un volumen perdido entre los volúmenes que pueblan el indi...more
Md Estigoy

In 1977, Jorge Luis Borges delivered a series of lectures for seven nights.The said lectures were then unofficially reproduced not until Borges serialized copies of them and produced this wonderful book. The lectures were about Divine Comedy, Dreams, A Thousand and One Nights, Kaballah, Buddhism, Blindness and Poetry.

I am very much unfamiliar with Borges before I came across this compilation but after getting through with the rest of it made me think that there is a very great possibility that...more
Jigar Brahmbhatt
Nice, comprehensive lectures from the grand-daddy of literature. I especially liked the pieces on Nightmares and Buddhism. What I found, which I seldom find even in books on psychology, is that the dreamer remembers not the dream but the memory of it. It is a very simple notion and I was delighted with how Borges handles it, calling a dream an ongoing work of fiction. That is not surprising from a man who even considered heaven as some sort of library. I truly wish I could attend one of his lect...more
DB
"Borges is our Virgil; only he knows the way." (from the introduction by Alastair Reid)

At first you might mistake the frequency and variety of Borges' references for pretentiousness, but soon you will understand it as a symptom...of genius! Borges seems to be an expert in all things even marginally literary, and it shows very clearly in this clever, erudite, and surprisingly easy-to-read collection of essays. Since they were adapted from a series of lectures he gave, they really do read conversa...more
Gustavo Enrique  Ortiz Clavijo
Nos hemos acostumbrado a leer a Borges, no a releer a Borges sobre nuestros actos mismos, sobre los mismos libros que asumimos de Borges dentro de nuestra enciclopedia lectora.

Seguimos la formalidad de nuestras reflexiones, de las interpretaciones exigidas y dejamos dos o tres links suficientes para decir que hemos consumido Borges. Sí, consumido, consumición de las fases explorativa, interpretativa, crítica y a veces creadora que se permite un ser humano, ese que es algo menos animal, en "etiqu...more
Harold
Five stars is not enough for this. Reading lectures by Borges is sheer pleasure and this book of seven lectures is fascinating from the first word to the last. We get Borges talking on subjects such as blindness, The Arabian Nights, The Divine Comedy etc and there is never a dull moment.This would be a good starting point for people who have yet to read Borges. I started with his Fictions and then went to his Non Fictions but I could have started here with as much fascination.
Rozonda
Esta colección de conferencias de Borges es, como casi toda su obra ensayística,un deleite y un aprendizaje constante. Borges, que puede ser muy barroco y complejo en sus textos literarios, es extremadamente sencillo y ameno cuando habla de lo que ama: una prueba sería, en este libro, su conferencia sobre la cábala, un tema sobre el que he leído mucho en muchos libros de tarot por la íntima relación que guardan ambas cosas, y sin embargo, es la conferencia de Borges la que me ha hecho comprender...more
Ashkan
چیزی در این میان وجود دارد که دانته نمی‌گوید، اما آدمی آن‌را به گونه‌ای غیرمستقیم احساس می‌کند و شاید حُسن این قسمت نیز در همین باشد. دانته سرنوشت دو دلداده را با رقتی بی‌پایان روایت می‌کند، و ما احساس می‌کنیم که بر سرنوشت آن دو رشک می‌برد. پائولو و فرانچسکا در دوزخ‌اند و دانته رستگاری خواهد یافت، اما آن دو به هم عشق ورزیده‌اند در حالیکه او هرگز به عشق زنی که دوست می‌داشت نائل نشد. بی‌عدالتی مسلمی در میان است، و دانته، اکنون که در فراق او به سر می‌برد، لابد بطور آزاردهنده‌ای آن‌را احساس می‌کند....more
Farhan Khalid
I read the books for the aesthetic emotions they offer me

What we call chance is our ignorance of the complex machinery of causality

Enchantment, as Stevenson said, is one of the special quality a writer must have

For Dante a single moment is enough

In that moment a person is defined forever

Dante unconsciously sought the central moment

A moment as a cipher of a life

They live in a word, in a gesture; they need do nothing more

They keep living and renewing themselves in the memory and in the imagination...more
Ethan
Sep 22, 2011 Ethan rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: book lovers, literature students, Borges fans
Shelves: nonfiction
Borges' Seven Nights is a beautiful collection of seven essays which were originally seven lectures given over a period of seven nights in the 1970s. Given the fact that Borges passed away more than 20 years ago, this is the closest most of us will ever come to hearing him lecture live. Thankfully, the presentation of the book is perfect for this. As you read, it feels as if Borges himself is sitting in the room telling you and a few close friends his thoughts on Poetry, Buddhism, The Divine Com...more
L

Borges is the lecturer (or to use a better word - a storyteller, because truly, these lectures have the magic and appeal of a story)of seven lushly informative (among other characteristics) lectures told in seven nights. The subjects seem random, but in fact are not - Borges was a man with an instinct for the universal, he could find a legitimate link between nations,philosophies, literatures thousands of miles and years away from each other, and thus has showed us how alike we all are, that now...more
Amber
So far, these seven lectures are superbly done. Borges' style really gives the feel that he is talking to you and you alone. The language is simple, and whether you've read the books he lectures about or not, it is very entertaining and provides great insight into the written word. He seems to have a real passion for his subjects.
His topics include nightmares, Dante, and Buddhism. In his lecture on Buddhism, he shows great respect for the subject, without strictly believing in it or claiming to...more
Arturo Rodriguez
Siete Noches - Jorge Luis Borges

"Tengo la pesadilla del laberinto y esto se debe, en parte, a un grabado en acero que vi en un libro francés cuando era chico. En ese grabado estaban las siete maravillas del mundo y entre ellas el laberinto de Creta. El laberinto era un gran anfiteatro, un anfiteatro muy alto (y esto se veía porque era más alto que los cipreses y que los hombres a su alrededor). En ese edificio cerrado, ominosamente cerrado, había grietas. Yo creía (o creo ahora haber creído) cuando era chico, que si tuviera u...more
Lisa
Feel like Borges' voice is gently shaking me awake and into a different dream, a colorful, magical, walkable (but ever-shifting) landscape of ideas. This is some of the loveliest reading I have done in years.

...

I finished this book this morning on a plane. Immediately I started again on page one. This book is gentle and humble, filled with reverence. My high school English teacher told us we should memorize poetry so that at stop-lights, or in line to buy avocados, we could have a conversation....more
Jennifer
i read this book only because one of my really good friends told me he read it and it changed his life when he as 19. so of course i was going to give it a chance.

i wouldn't say it changed my life at all. i did enjoy reading it though don't get me wrong he writes, or speaks? beautifully. it was a series of lectures that he has given at colleges about a number of different things. i would say that my favorite lecture in the book is the one he gives about dreams. i think that he takes something s...more
Sweetmongoose
I enjoyed this book of lectures by Jorge Luis Borges, which were given in the summer of 1977 in Buenos Aires. They were taped & transcribed in various versions, but were later corrected extensively by Borges working with Roy Bartholomew. A sampling of the topics of the lectures: Nightmares, The Kabbalah, Blindness, The Thousand and One Nights. I found these pieces unlike Borges' compressed and many layered fiction, but I liked following Borges through his associations, thoughts, reading habi...more
Meera
A reread of an old favorite. I think, with Borges, one comes for the fiction and stays for the essays. (Or lectures, in this case.)
Hugo
Me habría encantado asistir a estas maravillosas pláticas. Debió haber sido un increíble espectáculo ver hablar a este hombre.
Esther
STUNNING. So so so stunning! I was completely engaged, completely pulled in. (The only exception was his lecture on poetry, but even that had gems, and that's also because I don't particularly care for reading poetry analysis.) Borges brings a personal touch and personal experience into his explorations of literature and storytelling; I think he's also single-handedly convinced me to read Dante because of his deep love of The Divine Comedy. A truly fascinating look at a writer I've always meant...more
Mark
I enjoyed this slim volume of essays based on seven lectures Borges gave in Buenos Aires between June and August 1977.

There is a short introduction by Alistair Reid which provides some context and historical information on the lectures. Then the seven essays, in this order: The Divine Comedy, Nightmares, The Thousand and One Nights, Buddhism, Poetry, The Kabbalah, and Blindness. Some of them are, of course, better than others but all of them are worth reading.

This is the 6th book in the 12 Book...more
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Jorge Francisco Isidoro Luis Borges Acevedo (Spanish pronunciation: [xoɾxe lwis boɾxes], Russian: Хорхе Луис Борхес) was an Argentine writer and poet born in Buenos Aires. In 1914, his family moved to Switzerland where he attended school and traveled to Spain. On his return to Argentina in 1921, Borges began publishing his poems and essays in Surrealist literary journals. He also worked as a libra...more
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“Personally, I am a hedonistic reader; I have never read a book merely because it was ancient. I read books for the aesthetic emotions they offer me, and I ignore the commentaries and criticism.” 225 likes
“I...have always known that my destiny was, above all, a literary destiny — that bad things and some good things would happen to me, but that, in the long run, all of it would be converted
into words. Particularly the bad things, since happiness does not need to be transformed: happiness is its own end.”
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