"When he first came to New York, he and his friends tried to find a name for the relationship they craved between themselves and the universe. But the English language came up short: perspective, vision, knowledge, wisdom ― those words were all too heavy or too light. So Danny and his friends made up a name: alto. True alto worked two ways: you saw but also you could be seen, you knew and you were known. Two-way recognition."
The Keep, p. 6
By Jennifer Egan