: AN ACOUSTICS OF DETERMINATION IN FAULKNER AND BENJAMIN1 So that at last, as though out of some trivial and unimportant region beyond even distance, the sound of it seems to come slow and terrific and without meaning, as though it were a ghost travelling a half mile ahead of its own shape. "That far within my hearing before my seeing," Lena thinks. --William Faulkner (1990a, 5-6) Counter-Factual Listening The need to lend a voice to suffering is a condition of all truth. For suffering is objectivity that weighs on the subject; its most subjective experience, its expression, is objectively conveyed. --Theodor Adorno (2004, 18-19) In 1932, Walter Benjamin gave a radio address, one of hundreds, on the Mississippi Flood of 1927. The flood would continually resurge in William Faulkner's world, often in displaced form, as grieving brothers confront a river that washed away the bridge, talking "up to us in a murmur become ceaseless and myriad," stealing away Addie's coffin in As I Lay Dying (Faulkner 1 This article is excerpted from my book-in-progress, , which explores the materiality of listening in Conrad and Faulkner. Portions of this essay were presented at "Fifty Years after Faulkner: Faulkner
symploke – University of Nebraska Press
Published: Jan 8, 2016
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