In 1909, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti was talented, on the cusp of middle age, and ambitious. He was also full of thoughts about the future of European literature and art. Naturally, he wrote a manifesto, which appeared on the front page of Paris’ Le Figaro. Describing a recent automobile accident during which he had driven his car into a ditch (“O maternal ditch, almost full of muddy water! Fair factory drain! I gulped down your nourishing sludge …”) Marinetti claimed that he had emerged from his mishap with a new vision.