Embodying Memory

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For Electric Literature, Melody Nixon interviews Ruth Ozeki about what it means to write “embodied prose”:

I find that whether I’m writing fiction or memoirish essay, whatever you want to call it, the key to any kind of literary writing is being able to tap the body’s memory: to enter the writing through the senses, and through the body. If we’re able to do that then the writing itself becomes embodied. We are all human bodies; for the writer to be able to enter a scene or a piece of prose that way I think necessarily invokes a similar response in the reader. I’ve always written with the idea that writing is not just something one does with the mind, that you have to write embodied prose in order to elicit the same kinds of strong, physical, emotional responses, from the reader.


Jake Slovis earned his MFA in Writing from Rutgers University, where he now teaches English Composition. He is a second-generation Argentine American and has spent significant time living and writing in Buenos Aires. He currently resides in Brooklyn. More from this author →