The Painter of Modern Life (Le Peintre de la Vie Moderne)

Baudelaire, Charles (1821–1867), translated by Kline, A. S. (contact-email)

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Baudelaire’s ‘manifesto’ of Modernity was written in 1860 and published in instalments in Le Figaro in 1863. The essay serves as Baudelaire’s manifesto on Modernity, a term first used in French by Chateaubriand. Using Constantin Guys (Monsieur G.) as a case study, Baudelaire explores the facets of Modernity, including technological and economic transformation, individual alienation, and the challenges to traditional norms. His work influenced subsequent artistic movements like Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, and Surrealism. Moreover, he paved the way for Symbolist and Surrealist poets. Baudelaire’s conceptualisation of Modernity endures, capturing the ongoing tensions in urban, secular, and commercial society.

Author Details

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Kline, A. S.

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