Dedicated to the Memory of's BruceFollow Us on Twitter
Am I
Search Celebrities (By Last Name)
Search Collections
In The News
Voting Station
Jacques Barzun
Please vote to return to collections (Voting Results will appear on Right Sidebar).
    (November 30, 1907-October 25, 2012)
    Born in Creteil, France
    French-American cultural historian and professor at Columbia University
    Wrote over 40 books and hundreds of articles
    Best-known book was 'From Dawn to Decadence: 500 Years of Western Cultural Life, 1500 to the Present' (2000)
    Moderated 'Invitation to Learning' on CBS radio
    Named a Knight of the French Legion of Honor
    Awarded the US Presidential Medal of Freedom (2003)
    He experienced deep depression and contemplated suicide at age 11.
    He credited his productivity in part to chronic insomnia.
    He concluded that Western civilization was coming to an end.
    He called himself 'a cheerful pessimist.'
    He entered Columbia University at age 16 and graduated as the valedictorian.
    With Lionel Trilling, he implemented the 'Great Books' curriculum at Columbia.
    He wrote about a wide range of subjects, from philosophy and classical music to baseball and detective novels.
    Literary critic Arthur Krystal said, 'Barzun is someone to whom experts turn for help in their fields.'
    His statement 'Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball' is on a plaque at the Baseball Hall of Fame. (He also autographed a bat for the Hall on his 100th birthday.)
    When 'From Dawn to Decadence' became a best-seller despite its 800+ page length, he said 'The whole thing is a surprise, because scholarship is not exactly the thing people run after these days, or perhaps at any time.'

Credit: C. Fishel

    In 2018, Out of 2 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2018, Out of 3 Votes: 100% Annoying
    In 2017, Out of 3 Votes: 66.67% Annoying
    In 2016, Out of 9 Votes: 55.56% Annoying
    In 2015, Out of 6 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2014, Out of 10 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2013, Out of 11 Votes: 54.55% Annoying
    In 2012, Out of 105 Votes: 79.05% Annoying
Annoying Collections
Site News