In this module students will study French visual art from the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries alongside responses by French writers to paintings by their contemporaries. The module will consider themes such as `modern life¿ (Paris, city and country, travel and technology), the representation of women (how artists have followed or challenged tradition), desire and the unconscious in Surrealism, and the difficulties of understanding and representing `humanity¿ in the period after the Second World War. In the first semester, students will compare paintings with short extracts from novels or poems that evoke visual scenes, in order to see how representation differs in words and in images, and how writers try to convey what they see. In semester 2, they will study texts that have a visual dimension, such as `calligrammes¿ and books which writers and artists have produced together, and they will read modern art criticism that aims at offering a personal response to works of art rather than providing objective judgments. The aim of the module is to foster an enjoyment of modern French art through the words of writers who worked alongside some of the world¿s best known artists, and an ability critically to analyse visual and verbal representations of the modern world. It will make use of the Barber Institute¿s excellent collection of French art.