Portraits of France: Pascal, Molière, Madame de Pompadour, Manet and Debussy

This course explores the glories of creativity in France from 17th century and the Napoleonic era through to the birth of modern art, using a mixture of written commentary, original texts, and audio and visual material. The characters studied include: Blaise Pascal – mathematician, scientist and philosopher; Moliere – France’s greatest comic playwright; Mme de Pompadour – royal mistress and patron of the arts (some music to be included); Queen Marie Antoinette and the paintings of Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun; Eduard Manet – Impressionist artist; and Claude Debussy – the music of Impressionism and birth of Symbolism.


Course Tutor
Robert Forgacs


Supplied Course Material
Course Booklet, CDs + USBs


Units & Pricing
6 units / $78 per person


Course Code for Enrolment
D218


Getting Started

  1. Start your Group: Anyone can start a Discussion Group – seek out some like-minded friends or put up a notice in your local library, bookshop or workplace. Please note a minimum of 6 people is required to start a new discussion group.
  2. Arrange the Meetings: New groups need to decide where and when to meet, and for how long – whatever best suits members' particular situations.
  3. Run your Group: Choose a secretary to liaise with WEA and your tutor, a Discussion Leader to chair meetings, a reporter to take discussion notes to send to your tutor, and maybe a librarian to look after the books.
  4. Start the Course: Contact WEA Sydney to enrol. Bookings can be made for one year, divided into two terms – Term 1 commences in February, Term 2 in July (Groups may make forward bookings for popular choices). Please indicate in what order your Group wishes to study the courses, if more than one course is booked.