About the Program

The purpose of the Program in Written Arts is to permit and encourage students to experiment with their own writing in a context sensitive to intellectual, historical, and social realities, and the past and current literary landscapes. Writing so pursued then becomes part of a humanist education, in which the private effort of the writer addresses and becomes part of the world's discourse. We expect that our writers are also passionate readers.

The Program is staffed exclusively by distinguished writers of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction who emphasize both innovative, experimental work and work that foregrounds the conventions of writing. Intellectual stress is placed on literary theory and literary history, making students aware of conscious and unconscious influences on their writing, and of the reception their work is likely to find in the world.

In addition to the current faculty, Bard has an impressive legacy of visiting writers and writers in residence, including Chinua Achebe, John Ashbery, Ralph Ellison, William Gaddis, Anthony Hecht, Mary McCarthy, Toni Morrison, Peter Orner, Cynthia Ozick, Salvador Plascencia, Philip Roth, Karen Russell, and Nobel laureates Orhan Pamuk, José Saramago, and Isaac Bashevis Singer.

Written Arts conceives of writing as a practice, an energetic private enactment of public language. Self-expression is not part of the job description—any self one happens to have will inevitably come to expression whether it's summoned or not.

Contacting Us

Most but not all Written Arts faculty members have their offices in Shafer House. To contact Written Arts faculty, you may search the Bard Phonebook.

For current and prospective students with questions about the Written Arts Program, we strongly recommend that you review the information on this website as the first step in seeking information. All questions not answered here may be addressed to the Written Arts Program Coordinator, Corinna Cape ’15, at writtenarts@bard.edu or (845) 752-4454.

Our Location

The Written Arts Program is located in Shafer House on south campus, at the Annandale Triangle just west of the 9G/Kelly Road light.