Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means of language.
A philosophical problem has the form: I don’t know my way about.
I am interested in 18th century natural philosophy, science, particularly botany, the study of hybridity in plants and animals, which, of course, then allows me to consider the hybridity of language.
It is an hypothesis that the sun will rise tomorrow: and this means that we do not know whether it will rise.
For much of my life – my sister and I have talked about this – when we moved, we just thought the world behind us disappeared, and all of the people, they just didn’t exist any more.
My name is Natasha Trethewey, and I was born in Gulfport, Mississippi, in 1966, exactly 100 years to the day that Mississippi celebrated the first Confederate Memorial Day, April 26, 1866.
I cannot outline. I do not know what the next thing is going to happen in the book until it comes out of my fingers.
I know that my tendency is to be linear, and I’m trying to find ways to subvert that. And so in ‘Bellocq’s Ophelia’ my device for subverting it was to tell the story and then to tell it again; it always circles back to this one moment, and it’s not linear, but it’s round in that way, and much of ‘Native Guard’ is like that.
Revision is the heart of writing. Every page I do is done over seven or eight times.
I was always very aware of the nature of the place where I was growing up in Gulfport, Mississippi, how that place was shaping my experience of the world. I had to go to the Northeast for graduate school because I felt like I had to get far away from my South, be outside it, to understand it.