Jorge Luis Borges

DIED. Jorge Luis Borges, 86, blind Argentine author of poetry and fiction, one of Latin America's greatest writers; of liver cancer; in Geneva. Borges was an original: his poetry was somber and elegaic, his short stories at once fantastical and grittily realistic--most notably the mystery-like ''fictions,'' reminiscent of Kafka and Poe. The 1973 return of Dictator Juan Peron prompted him to resign as director of the National Library in his native Buenos Aires. Far from a handicap, being blind, he said, ''leaves the mind free to explore the depths and heights of human imagination.''

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