On July 22, 2010, in New York’s Madison Square Park, the National Book Foundation hosted a celebration of Donald Barthelme’s work, “A Strange Object Covered in Fur Which Breaks Your Heart.” I moderated the discussion/reading which featured Stacey D’Erasmo, David Gates, and Emily Barton. About seventy people came to share their enthusiasm for Barthelme’s fiction, including his youngest daughter, Katharine (“Born Dancin'”) whom I was pleased to see after so many years. Thanks to everyone who came, to Stacey, David, and Emily for their generosity and insight, and to Leslie Shipman of the National Book Foundation for giving us the opportunity to celebrate and have so much fun on a pleasant evening in NewYork City.
“Barthelme would undoubtedly be pleased with [his] first full-scale biography, Hiding Man, a genuine literary masterpiece penned by his former student, Tracy Daugherty. One cannot read this book without recognizing that Barthelme was the dominant writer of his generation or that Daugherty will be one of the leading literary biographers of his own”–Jacob M. Appel, Rain Taxi, Winter 2009/2010.