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Jacques Barzun and Friends

  • Jacques Barzun and Friend (American Scholar)
    What did a distinguished historian, and possibly a great man, see in an unkempt young would-be writer?
    By Arthur Krystal | March 23, 2021

    More important, he had a soothing effect on me. I was calmer in his presence, as if the world wasn’t all about struggle, competition, and jockeying for position. Somehow he seemed detached from such things, and it was a detachment that subtly transferred to me. And when I think back on how little I knew then and how well I thought of myself (the two obviously went hand-in-hand), I see that he came along at a moment when I needed someone who represented what adulthood could be like, even if I sensed that my own would be very different. And so, for 40 years, whenever I heard his distinct but slightly throaty voice, the world made a little bit more sense, and it was a pleasure to make him laugh.


  • Jacques Barzun, 30 Nov 1907 – 25 Oct 2012
    Historian & Scholar dies at 104 (NYtimes)

    Jacques Barzun (on vimeo)

    The Achievement of Jacques Barzun (The First Things)

    Cynthia Ozick – “the last of the thoroughgoing generalists,”

  • My notion about any artist is that we honor him best by reading him, by playing his music, by seeing his plays or by looking at his pictures. We don’t need to fall all over ourselves with adjectives and epithets. Let’s play him more.
    — Jacques Barzun, in an interview with John C. Tibbetts

    Barzun 100 (a blog dedicted to Barzun)

  • Darwin Marx Wagner
    (Cover by Leonard Baskin, Typography by Edward Gorey)

    Update: Endless Rewriting (Another article from American Scholar).

    When a novice writer received a letter from Jacques Barzun, asking her to write a book, how could she have known what she was in for?
    By Helen Hazen

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