Richard WertimeDr. Richard A. Wertime

Professor of English
Director of Graduate Studies in English
and the Humanities
wertimed@arcadia.edu 

Dr. Richard A. Wertime has taught English since 1968. He began at Arcadia in 1975 as an Associate Professor of English, and is now a full Professor and Director of the Graduate program, specializing in English Literature of the Renaissance, the Restoration, and the Eighteenth Century, with a special emphasis on Renaissance drama. More recently, he has focused on contemporary American fiction, with special emphasis on creative writing. When he's not busy teaching at Arcadia or making appearances at book signings or interviews, Dr. Wertime regularly offers workshops that include What Happens to Us When We Undertake Tasks?, which considers the dynamics of task performance, with special emphasis on the psychodynamics of procrastination; Strategies in the Interview, a systematic presentation of effective strategies for interviewing others and being interviewed by others; The Writer's Craft, an introduction to the techniques used by fiction writers in creating their effects; and The Development of Expertness, a "roadmap" describing the journey that leads from inexperience to expertness.

Read about Wertime's scholarly and creative activities in the Bulletin.

“I take as one of my central touchstones as a writer a remarkable—and elegantly simple—sentence of Kenneth Clark's, from his book, Landscape into Art. In commencing a discussion about the landscape painter's passion for visible light, Clark says, 'Facts become art through love.' Those five words alone seem to me to condense an immense amount of wisdom, and remind us that every artist must approach his/her task with an inherent generosity of mind that ennobles the project at hand, irrespective of the artistic medium. Indeed, even when a writer is disparaging or 'assassinating' a character—as writers like Willa Cather and Eudora Welty do so deliciously—there must be a kind of love of one's subject at work, a profound and attentive, and hence an inherently respectful, care for the character. Great art, to my mind, is always generous in nature, never mean-spirited, and always deeply serious—even the comic masterpieces.”
— Dr. Richard A. Wertime 

Education

  • A.B. in English, Haverford College
  • M.A. in English, University of Pennsylvania
  • Ph.D. in English, University of Pennsylvania

Courses Taught

  • The Teaching of Fiction Writing
  • The Discovery of Adulthood in British and American Literature
  • The Novels of Willa Cather
  • Disaster, Death and Madness
  • The Contemporary Moment
  • The Philadelphia Seminar
  • Various Classical and Medieval Texts courses
  • Various Renaissance and Enlightenment Literature courses

Publications

Dr. Wertime boasts a broad range of publications in the following fields:

  • Archaeology
  • Literary Criticism
  • Critical-thinking Theory and Cognitive Psychology
  • Culture and Travel

He holds significant publications in the following:

  • The Yale Review
  • The Hudson Review
  • Ploughshares
  • The Georgia Review
  • Southwest Review, and others 

His most notable achievement to date:

  • Publication of Citadel on the Mountain: A Memoir of Father and Son. Published in 2000 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux and Winner of the 2001 James A. Michener Memorial Prize in literature
  • Mary Roberts Rinehart Foundation Grant-in-aid to support fiction writing
  • Lindback Award for Outstanding Teaching

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