Wednesday, December 05, 2012

The Living Barzun

From Dawn to Decadence, Folio Society edition, 2015.

John Adams, On Barzun's Music in American Life

Lavengro, Gay Wedding in 16th Century / Richard III's Hump

Joshua Scharf, The Higher Ed Bubble as a Cultural Opportunity


Rod Dreher, A Definition of Decadence

Barzun, Lincoln the Literary Genius (Schori Press edition)

John Adams, America now

Louis Torres, Aristos, A Jacques Barzun Compendium

Katherine Kolb, Jacques Barzun: teacher, mentor, friend

Andrew J. Harvey, Baseball, America, and the 21st Century

Helen Hazen, "Endless Rewriting", The American Scholar, Spring 2013. Chosen by the editors in 2015 as a favorite literary essay of the past decade.

Charles Barzun, A Letter to My Grandfather

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Jacques Barzun, 30 Nov 1907 – 25 Oct 2012

Many thanks, much love. RIP

American Heritage Dictionary, Jacques Barzun answers a 2012 usage questionnaire

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Marguerite Barzun and the Barzun family, Letter to the San Antonio Express-News

Jacques Barzun guest book

Sunset North Funeral Home

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Columbia News

Columbia Spectator

Columbia College News and Updates

Columbia University Senate, Resolution to Honor the Memory of Jacques Barzun

Timothy P. Cross, Columbia College Today, Jacques Barzun ’27, ’32 GSAS, Esteemed Historian and Professor

Hillel Italie, Associated Press

Edward Rothstein, New York Times

Steve Bennett, San Antonio Express-News

Joe Holley, Washington Post

Alexander Nazaryan, New York Daily News

Telegraph, UK

Peter Dobrin, Philadelphia Inquirer

Carolyn Kellogg, Los Angeles Times

Neda Ulaby, NPR News

Diane Ravitch, A Tiny Brush with Greatness

D.G. Myers, Commentary

Gerald J. Russello, First Things

Christopher Hawtree, The Independent

Joseph Epstein, Wall Street Journal (subscription)

Douglas Johnson, The Guardian

The Times

Curtis Evans, The Passing Tramp

Martin Edwards, 'Do You Write Under Your Own Name?'

Joshua Sharf, View from a Height

Ann Althouse

John Althouse Cohen

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Robert Reno, The Lexicon of Pussyfooting

Ashbrook, Murray, Lukacs, and Miller discuss Jacques Barzun and Civilization in Decline

Janice Hidey, Jacques Barzun: His Writings Influenced My Teaching

Paul Devlin, Remembering Jacques Barzun Remembering Robert Pitney

David Warren, Jacques Barzun, RIP

Roger Kimball, Jacques Barzun, 1907-2012

[Kimball] The New Criterion, Jacques Barzun, 1907–2012

Herbert I. London, My Teacher, Jacques Barzun

Bruce Edward Walker, Jacques Barzun, R.I.P.

Cary Clack, Barzun's Mind Was One of the World's Wonders

A. Graham Down, Jacques Barzun--A Personal Reminiscence

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Stephen Snowder, The Legacy of Jacques Barzun, 1907-2012

Barzun 'will stand out among very best' Columbia professors

Scott McLemee, Jacques Barzun: Anti-Educationalist?

Carl L Bankston III, Remembering the Work of Jacques Barzun

Frank Deford, the American Pastime Fades in Popularity

Mark O. DeGirolami, Jacques Barzun on Art, the State, and Religion

Tim Lacy, Jacques Barzun (1907-2012): RIP

Denyse O'Leary, Jacques Barzun (1907-2012), a champion of the life of the mind

I. J. Singh, Lessons from a Dead White Guy

Steve Balch, Jacques Barzun Remembered

Princeton University Press, In Memoriam Jacques Barzun

Tim Wiles, A Fond 'Adieu' to Jacques Barzun

Michael Flannery, Jacques Barzun, RIP

Richard Weikart, Appreciating Historian Jacques Barzun's Critique of Darwinism

Unione Cristiani Cattolici Razionali, Lo storico Barzun e il successo popolare del darwinismo

Henk Rijkers, KatholiekNieuwsblad, Jacques Barzun (1907–2012)

Michael Dirda, Jacques Barzun—And Others

Chet Raymo, In the House of Intellect

E. Warren Perry, Jr., Jacques Barzun, 1907-2012 (with the portrait of Barzun that Boris Chaliapin painted for Time Magazine).

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Chuck Ross, Why Baseball Remains Our Greatest Game

BlaiseP, Jacques Barzun: the Cheerful Pessimist

Music & Vision, Jacques Barzun

BBC Radio 4: Henze, Steward, Barzun, Chopra, Callier

Randy Gover, Barzun Was a Model of Civilization

Alexander Zlatanos Ibsen, En aftenstjerne slukket

Mark Malvasi, Jacques Barzun, 1907-2012

Aristos, A Jacques Barzun Compendium

Andrew Stout, Is This the Golden Age of the Amateur?

Bryan Townsend, The Music Salon: Carter, Henze, Barzun

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Chet Raymo, Teacher in America

João Pereira Coutinho, Jacques Barzun, o Virgílio moderno

Rob Rumfelt, Good-bye, Jacques

Arsen Darnay, Now on to Renascence

Jérôme Lohez Foundation, Letter Signed by Jacques Barzun, March 2012

Cynthia Haven, Jacques Barzun: “I am a liberal, a conservative, and a socialist”

America Magazine, No PowerPoint, Please

David Forbes, RIP Jacques Barzun

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Christopher Faille, Vale: Jacques Barzun

Christopher Faille, R.I.P., Jacques Barzun

Christopher Faille, Selections from a Correspondence

Christopher Faille, The Barzun-James Connection

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Paul LeRoy Geres, Jacques Barzun sitting in front of Albert Gleizes portrait of his Mom Madame H. M. Barzun 4 Times

Todd Shallat, Jacques Barzun, Farewell

Conrad Wilson, Herald Scotland, Jacques Barzun

Steve Donoghue, A Stroll with William James!

Kelsey McKernie, History News Network, Jacques Barzun: A Legacy of Passion
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Uncensored John Simon: JACQUES BARZUN, R.I.P.

Barzun's correction of Safire addressed the difference between moored and *anchored*. Ships at dock are generally moored, which means they have at least two lines made fast to cleats or bollards.

Barzun's knowledge came from a sailor's experience, including maritime reading, of course. He told this former navy navigator and recreational sailor that he greatly enjoyed sailing the Elizabeth Islands out of Cotuit, Mass.

Thank you for including the anecdote about JB's invitation to lunch that ended in splitting the bill. The Barzun family misfortune of having their broker pirate their funds marked teenage Jacques indelibly, even into his nineties. (See Michael Murray's Portrait at p. 33)

He once scolded me for using more postage than required for a thick letter I sent to him. Never mind that the gas for a trip to the post office would have cost much more than those few cents for stamps.

Despite the few cutting remarks known to me or the rare stingy act, Barzun's generosity predominates. His gifts have been substantial, not only of donations to orchestras, institutions, and individuals, but also the gift of his own talents employed for the benefit of others.

I also suspect that cool courtesy was his shield, providing privacy ... and protecting writing time. How else could he have produced so much?

John Adams of


“Mean”? “Niggardly”? Nonsense. For a book not available here that I purchased for him in France, Jacques reimbursed me to the penny—not a cent more, not a cent less. He took to heart the message of the excellent old proverb, “les bons comptes font les bons amis,” which William Cobbett well translated in 1833 as “even reckoning makes lasting friends.”

“Barzun, however, one was not allowed to edit. Everything, down to the last comma, had to be left as it was […].” The implication, that Jacques did not want to be edited, is false. He several times assured me that, as editor of collections of essays on Berlioz, I would be doing him a favor if I were “merciless” with his prose. On one occasion I dared to suggest that he change one word and add one comma. He rejected the word change, accepted the comma, and told me my editing was “brilliant.” This was partly ironic, of course, but it was also partly sincere.

Peter Bloom, Professor of Humanities, Smith College

Guide to the Leo Raditsa Papers at Harvard University

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Remembering the Passed, Remembering Jacques Barzun (YouTube)

Permanent Qui Vive, A Moment of Silence

Steve Sailer, Historian Jacques Barzun, age 104 RIP

Yaacov Lozowick, Jacques Barzun, Intellectual Giant, 1907-2012

John Adams, musical expression

Mark Halpern, Vocabula Review, Jacques Barzun: His Life and His Life (subscription)

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Lara Cardon Updike, Leaves on a Tree

William Murchison, The Modern University and the Muddled Mind

Ben Zimmer, Boston Globe, Jacques Barzun, protector of English (subscription)

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Of Jacques Barzun on FriendFeed

Michael Murray's biography of Barzun, Jacques Barzun: Portrait of a Mind was published by Frederic C. Beil on November 10, 2011.

Now that Mr. Barzun has reached 103, the blog title Barzun 100 looks passé. It seems time to start a new forum with a new title, so I have started the group Of Jacques Barzun on FriendFeed. A subscriber of FriendFeed may join the group and contribute to it.

NOTE 11/3/10: For a recent interview of Jacques Barzun, see the video A Conversation with Jacques Barzun (2010).

NOTE 11/10/11: Jacques Barzun interviewed on his life, April 4, 2009.

NOTE 1/25/12: gentle rereader . . . rediscovering Jacques Barzun, a blog by John Adams.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Honoring Jacques Barzun

Jacques Barzun

was born in Créteil, France
on 30 November 1907

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
in the offices of Scribner’s in 1987 as the two discuss what became the radio series The World of Robert Schumann.

Note from Jacques Barzun

“I want the many well-wishers — friends and strangers who have greeted me on my recent birthday — to know that I have been greatly moved by these kind messages. I thank everyone for these expressions of good will, which I regret that I cannot acknowledge individually.”


L'Abbaye (1906 1908)

Preview of the Abbay de Créteil segment of a French documentary on Unanimism.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Begin Here

Photo courtesy of webrefdesk.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

History Book Club Thread

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Forgotten Treasure: Practical Agitation

Jacques Barzun: "Practical Agitation" by John Jay Chapman

— from Los Angeles Times, Forgotten treasures of the last century, from 25 writers, December 22, 2009

Thanks to David Lull.