"He speaks in your voice, American, and there's a shine in his eye that's halfway hopeful." is the opening sentence in the novella that was originally the prologue to DeLillo's 827 pager Underworld. It’s a striking line, a powerful one, and to me, someone who reads few books written by men, a masculine line. I wonder if a woman, or for that matter a person of color could have written it. That's not to say women and POC can't write stunning openers, it's to say that there's a confidence in DeLillo's sentiment, that others will relate to him, that his voice is "your voice." One of the main characters in the book is a 14-year-old African-American, but there are no women present in the whole 81 pages, except a mention toward the end of a photograph of Frank Sinatra (also a character in the novella)'s wife Ava Gardner's cleavage, and perhaps a few other reference to everymen's wives. I'm not pointing this out to criticize necessarily, but to say that in reading this book, I was not on my own turf.
When you see a thing like that, a think that becomes a newsreel, you begin to feel you are a carrier of some solemn scrap of history. p.17