Capt. Richard Madden was an Irish then working under the orders of the English regime though a very incompetent officer whereby during then faced certain treason charges (Borges 1). The fact that he was still in office as captain, shows the level of dictatorship and injustices that occurred during postcolonial eras. He resided in Victor Rune bergs flat. The probability that was Victor under arrest or who had died (Borges 1). Victor and the persona in the book were agents of the German empire who were acting as spies. Even though the captain killed Victor in the name of self-defense, he must have taken advantage of the situation because the agents were unwanted and a threat to him. These instilled fear in Victor’s colleague who went and locked himself in the bedroom upstairs. This indicates the fact that people still lived with fear in the postcolonial era. Since ruthless officials could any time during then murder people especially those who were not loyal. This era is evidently different from the modern era where people have rights and democracy prevails. Unlike the postcolonial era, there is no dictatorship generally in the modern time and heightened incompetence officers for people have the power to remove them from their respective offices. People do not live with fear in the modern era because they have protection from the laws, which will punish any injustices committed.
The people of the post-colonial era believed in premonitions and interpreted every symbol presented to them. This is evident where the author states that looking through the window, he saw the familiar roofed and the cloud shaded six o’clock sun (Borges 2). The familiar view meant that there was nothing extraordinary, which could give him a premonition that he was going to die. He found it incredible that he was going to die in such a day. The people in the postcolonial era had beliefs evident in the fact where he found sitting wrong for him to die yet he was a child in a symmetrical garden of Hai Feng and the fact that he had already lost his father (Borges 2). Still looking outside, the author sees a bird flying across the sky where he translates it to an airplane then to many airplanes annihilating the artillery station with vertical bombs (Borges 2). Contrary to the postcolonial era, in the modern era, people hardly still believe in premonitions and translating symbols. However, some communities still believe in premonitions up to date.
The persona in the book had little consolation for Capt. Richard did not know he knew the secret (Borges 2). The secret was the name of the particular location of the British artillery park on the River Ancre. He had to deliver the message to the chief in Germany but he claimed that his human voice was weak. This was especially because there was neither democracy nor rights to express oneself. He wanted to let out the secret before meeting his fate, which in this case was arrest or death. He, however, found a clue to a solution through unveiling telephone contacts before heading to Fenton, which was approximately half- hour’s ride while using a train (Borges 2). He had gone to Dr. Stephen Albert’s house. The persona in the book, therefore, opted to kill Albert. According to him, it was the only way to pass his secret to Berlin. The name of the secret city was Albert and by killing the learned sinologist named Albert, he could have succeeded in passing his message. After the persona killed Albert, Capt. Richard arrested him (Borges 10). He successfully delivered his message evident form the way Berlin responded quickly by bombing the secret city. This shows negative options that people could result in the post-colonial period. All is a result of a lack of the right of speech, expression, or even movement. The persona was not a spy by choice but because the German regime than had subjected him to it, which exemplifies the dictatorship in the postcolonial era contrary to the modern era where the authorities recognize the rights of the people.
Most books in the post-colonial and ancient times failed to be infinite. Mostly certain phrases failed to make sense whereby others needed translations for they had bore meanings. Albert, therefore, opted to introduce a cyclic volume, which could continue indefinitely (Borges 7). In this case, heredity work passed through generations and at each level, the new individual added a chapter or corrected the previous pages done by the elders. The cyclic format is comparable to a thousand and one nights since Scheherazade developed a strategy to make her stories infinite. She did it because she did not want the king to kill her and hence had to repeat and add more on her stories for one thousand and one nights until the king took her as his queen (McNaughton 2). From her stories, the king learned more attributes about life.
Borges, Jorge. The Garden of Forking Paths. For Victor Ocampo.1941.
McNaughton, Ken. A thousand and one nights.