Upward Mobility in the U.S.A.

As the characters in The 42nd Parallel start to converge, every one of them has demonstrated some type of pluck or ambition. The biographical sketches (Thomas Edison, natch) hit the same chord: initiative is everything.

Industry, as seen through the eyes of his characters in 1915-1916, isn’t a dehumanizing System, but a vital force that can be harnessed by men and women of ambition and the right kind of zeal. I suspect that as time goes on, it’s this temptation that lures the radicals away from their principles, but I’m not sure yet.

Photos from here and here.