When other characters interpret Benjy’s sounds–saying what he allegedly means or speaking for him–they are writing on the smooth surface, or turning it into striated space. They are making links or articulations, connecting his sounds to known language or stories, “making sense” of his sounds. The characters thus interrupt Benjy’s sounds, as when Luster tells him to “shut up that slobbering and moaning.”
The functionalist organization [of modern urban life], by privileging progress (i.e., time), causes the condition of its own possibility–space itself–to be forgotten; space thus becomes the blind spot in a scientific and political technology.
The nation, or the nation-state, has been the privileged unit of modernity, but has never ruled out entirely other units of mapping cultures – from the “tribal” units of anthropology to the civilizational units of high cultures. These mappings establish boundaries that are thought to express something about what they contain – more often than not a political unit that derives its identity from particular social and cultural practices, the one not clearly distinguished from the other.