Honored with Gemini Ink’s inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award was San Antonio transplant Jacques Barzun, whose masterwork, From Dawn to Decadence, he completed here. Barzun was unable to attend the gala at the St. Anthony Hotel.
In a tribute to the Columbia professor emeritus, author of more than 30 books over 80 years, Express-News Senior Critic Mike Greenberg praised the “honesty and tenacity, the beauty and wit” of Barzun's writing.
“At the core of Jacques Barzun's way of thinking is his use of language,” Greenberg said. “He is an amazing writer. Hardly a paragraph passes without something that sings, zings and sometimes stings.”
In a videotaped response, Barzun said he was “greatly flattered and deeply touched” by the award, thanking his family in his formative years, notably a great-grandmother, born in 1830, “who made school history real.”
Literacy won’t be dead in San Antonio as long as Gemini Ink’s around — and last week’s Inkstravaganza fundraiser was the best ever.
Lifetime Achievement honoree Jacques Barzun seemed young despite his 98 years, in a clear, eloquent videotaped response to the honor. (He would have been there, he told [executive director Rosemary] Catacalos ahead of time, but he doesn’t have the energy to go out at night when he’s working all day on his new book.)