It’s not fair to assume that states rose as a direct response of settled agriculture because assigning all of the credit to agriculture doesn’t serve to frame the bigger picture of the changes in thought processing that were taking place overall in modern Homo sapiens in which agriculture is one of them. Still, I see how agriculture could play a significant part in the creation of nation states. It would make sense that more people would settle in one area where their food supply was nearly constant because they would not have to emphasize following the herds they hunted as much as they would previously. Just as many organisms settle and grow in proximity to lasting water sources for drinking water security, the family bands of modern Homo sapiens might have preferred to stay in proximity to lasting food sources (or longer lasting than what they were used to up to then with moving herds). Reproduction in close ranges in bands that aren’t settling in far apart may be sharing spaces and/or running into issues of crowding. In lieu of that, organization by authority figures develops and grows more powerful as they organize more people. These assumptions are most likely problematically linear ways to view what might’ve been, but still a basic enough framework to understand how states might’ve come to be.
Continuing on the general topic of contributions of the state, many cultural artifacts raise questions to me in relation to the settlement and development of bands to states. We see evidence of very intention burial practices. Were bands more likely to stay settled in an area if they buried their dead there? Did they only bury their dead as they traveled or only as they started permanently/semi-permanently settling? Did individuals and bands have a kind of self-awareness that would want to make them distinguishable from others (similar to how we have the concepts of race, ethnicity, and nationality)? Were their models of artistic expression work of specialized workers, joint efforts between many band members across growing states, or something else? I believe that it is these decisions, the presence of planning and intention that gave way to the rise of culture. After all, culture as we know it today is a collection of attitudes and practices shared among communities. As bands/communities are widely sharing attitudes and practices in shared spaces, they are contributing to the “construction” of their state so to speak. Agriculture, religious/spiritual practices (ex. burials), and artistic expression are constructed pillars that build what we know as the state.