Borges. "The Garden of Forking Paths". Study Guide
  1. How does the absence of the first tow pages affect our understanding and appreciation of the rest of the story?
  2. Describe the ways Borges uses the labyrinth as the central idea and image in the story.
  3. An explicit reference is made to the Thousand and One Nights, a recursively narrated work of literature. In what ways is Borges's story "The Garden of Forking Paths" recursive? What other recurring patterns are evident.
  4. What exactly is the solution that Stephen Albert has discovered to the mystery concerning the project of the narrator's ancestor?
  5. Describe the analogies between characters and between events in the story.
  6. What is a labyrinth? What precisely is the analogy that connects a labyrinth in space with a labyrinth in time?
  7. What kind of questions does Borges raise in the story about the nature of Time.
  8. Describe the term "art for art's sake" and how it may apply to this story.
  9. How does the story relate to hypertext? (find a definition of "hypertext")
  10. List all the "authors" in the story, their relationship to each other, and how each contributes to the narrative. Describe how Borges blurs the traditional distinction between author, narrator, and characters.
  11. What new questions does the text of the story prompt you to ask?