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Themes and Meanings

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Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 125

Borges’s interest in philosophical idealism and its implications is evident in “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius.” Men imagine the world as they wish it to be and then try to impose this vision on others; Borges describes how seductive yet how dangerous this penchant can be. The chaos of the real world cannot be understood by human beings, and yet men are endlessly tempted to define and control reality by establishing rules. Tlön offers this illusion of order and purposefulness, but it is shown in this story to be a human plot to take over the earth. Borges suggests some parallels with the expansion of the Nazi movement and with Marxism; “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius” is one of his more political stories.

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