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Saturday, March 4, 2017

Ted Chiang on Philosophy in Fiction

"[I]f abstract philosophical questions were the only thing I was interested in, I’d probably write... speculative essays. [P]hilosophical questions are most interesting when they have significant consequences for a person’s life.... 
"[O]ne of the things that interests me as a writer is finding ways to make philosophical questions storyable [that is, the ability to make certain notions or ideas into stories]."
--Ted Chiang in Electric Literature (interviewed by Meghan McCarron)

"I do want there to be a depth of human feeling in my work, but that’s not my primary goal as a writer.... My primary goal has to do with engaging in philosophical questions and thought experiments, trying to work out the consequences of certain ideas."
-- and in The New Yorker (interviewed by Joshua Rothman)

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