Jacques Barzun Reader
Selections from His Works(amazon)
Jacques Barzun (View Bio)
Hardcover: HarperCollins, 2002; Paperback: Perennial Classics, 2003.
"Enthralling.... An ornament to the intellectual life of the nation.... He writes with great authority, out of an ordered set of reflections, conclusions, and convictions, yet he always seems to be open to challenge.... The genre of cultural history Barzun helped to create embraces just about everything.... No topic is too large, no detail too negligible, to engage his attention.... Time and again, he challenges the received view that rests on false or second-hand information. The message is plain: Return to the primary evidence, see it with fresh eyes, and report what you have seen, no matter the consequences. —" — Wilson Quarterly
"[Barzun's] ability to express his erudition without condescension, which may account for his prolonged popularity, runs through this retrospective drawn from his huge archive of compositions. Rhetorical clarity animates each of the several dozen selections, for Barzun practices what he has preached for a lifetime: writing concretely, rather than abstractly; writing to convince, not to overwhelm. Still another clue to Barzun's connectedness with an audience resides in his expositions on critics of the past.... Barzun's anthology...consistently provokes and delights. A positive addition to the Barzun books every library stocks." — Booklist