This book transforms our perception of Renoir's biography, and his social and intellectual status. Renoir is revealed to be both a radical and a reactionary, bitterly opposing the factory system that stripped the worker of initiative, turning him into a machine. The book provides not only invaluable insights into Renoir, but also a much needed comparative study of the decorative arts in nineteenth century France and Britain. All eleven texts (articles and letters for newspapers, draft essays etc.) are published both in English with a commentary by Herbert, and in French. Four introductory chapters by Herbert precede the texts. Includes unpublished writings, including Renoir's Grammar of Art, long thought to be lost.