Friday, October 21, 2016
From The Age of Innocence, by Edith Wharton
"'Culture! Yes—if we had it! But there are just a few little local patches, dying out here and there for lack of—well, hoeing and cross–fertilising: the last remnants of the old European tradition that your forebears brought with them. But you're in a pitiful little minority: you've got no centre, no competition, no audience. You're like the pictures on the walls of a deserted house: 'The Portrait of a Gentleman.' You'll never amount to anything, any of you, till you roll up your sleeves and get right down into the muck. That, or emigrate ... God! If I could emigrate ...'"
From Chapter XIV