The response was unani- mous and in thunder-tones--"NO!" "Will you succor and protect him as a brother-man--a resident of the old Bay State?" "YES!" shouted the whole mass, with an energy so startling, that the ruthless tyrants south of Mason and Dixon's line might almost have heard the mighty burst of feeling, and recognized it as the pledge of an invincible determination, on the part of those who gave it, never to betray him that wanders, but to hide the outcast, and firmly to abide the consequences.
There are two hundred and sixty-four wires crossing the Mississippi, in the Bell system; and five hundred and forty-four crossing Mason and Dixon's Line. It is the telephone which does most to link together cottage and skyscraper and mansion and factory and farm.
As his readings of Pynchon's ampersand as well as Mason and Dixon's line, of Roth's liberation and loss, of the desire for closure and openness, ably demonstrate, these larger--and deeper--questions never went away from the contemporary novel.