By Michael Austin

Together with her certain, impassioned voice and known felicity of language, Terry Tempest Williams talks approximately wasteland and natural world, position and eroticism, paintings and literature, democracy and politics, kinfolk and background, Mormonism and faith, writing and creativity, and different matters that interact her agile mind—in a collection of interviews accrued and brought through Michael Austin to symbolize the span of her occupation as a naturalist, writer, and activist.

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Extra resources for A Voice in the Wilderness: Conversations with Terry Tempest Williams

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It values a work ethic. It values family, which means having children. And it values numbers. Ultimately, my culture values control, a control which suppresses creative expression. That is necessary because creative expression threatens to undermine the status quo. What does American culture value? , information is valued, because information is power. And power within a patriarchy becomes eroticized. Marilyn French has written that women view sexuality primarily as a communication of pleasure, while men within a patriarchy view it primarily as an expression of power.

That is where he lifts off from the face of the earth and moves through an ocean of snow—weight and release, weight and release. He becomes a bird, an angel, mediating between two worlds. Each person has their own intimate connection to the erotic, to the sacred, to that movement. Once again, it’s that notion of surrendering to something greater than ourselves. And of course, the erotic is about love, our deep hunger for communion, where issues of restraint and yearning, engagement and desire enter us.

We fear that which we desire most. The man who is building these houses in our canyon has more money than he knows what to do with. He is a man who has a deep desire for connection without knowing how to connect. I know this sounds judgmental. But I know him. I grew up with him. We played with his nine children, growing up in our neighborhood. What if we were to hand this man a candle at El Rocío, on the edge of the migration of flamingos, and if he were to carry that candle into that room to sit with his desire?

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