Poet, aesthete and hedonist, Baudelaire was also one of the most groundbreaking art critics of his time. Here he explores beauty, fashion, dandyism, the purpose of art and the role of the artist, and describes the painter who, for him, expresses most fully the drama of modern life. GREAT IDEAS. Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are.