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“My own material existence I am reasonably assured of. I can imagine my friend at the other end of the line. But between us two there is an airy nowhere, inhabited by voices and nothing else[…]The vocal inhabitants of this strange region have an amazing vanishing quality[…] And sometimes…you hear the confused murmur of a hundred voices. You catch more expressions from private conversations than your nerves can transmit to the central office of your brain; and if you are imaginative, you may undergo, as I have, a feeling as if you had a hundred astral bodies that were guiltily listening at as many keyholes.”

 

“A Reporters Visit to the Boston Telephone Exchange”

Scientific American 1887, 106

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