Richard Wittman

Richard Wittman
Associate Professor
Graduate Admissions Advisor

Office Hours

Spring 2024: Non-Teaching

Office Location

Arts 2314


Cultural history of European architecture and town planning, 17th - 19th centuries; theory and historiography of architecture.


M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D. Columbia University
B.A. Yale University


Richard Wittman specializes in the cultural history of architecture and town planning in seventeenth-, eighteenth-, and nineteenth-century Europe. Within that framework, themes of interest include: the emergence of modern configurations of space, society, and publicness; the history of architectural theory, criticism, and public discourse; the emergence of the modern public; and the evolution of architectural patronage in changing political contexts; religion, religious architecture, and modernity; nationalism and architecture; critiques of the normative historiography concerning architectural modernity and historicism.

Professor Wittman's latest book is being published simultaneously in Italian and English, as Ricostruire la Chiesa. San Paolo fuori le mura nella Roma dell'Ottocento (Viella, 2023) and as Rebuilding St. Paul's Outside the Walls in Rome: Architecture and Catholic Revival in the 19th Century (Cambridge University Press, 2024). Prior to that, he published Architecture, Print Culture, and the Public Sphere in Eighteenth-Century France (Routledge, 2007; French translation 2019). Other major publications include: "Early Modern Church Architecture in Paris," in The Cambridge Guide to the Architecture of Christianity (2023); "A Partly Vacated Historicism: Artifacts, Architecture, and Time in Nineteenth-Century Papal Rome," Grey Room (2021) Link opens an external site; "Churches and States," Places Journal (2019); "The Problem Concerning History," e-flux journal (2017) Link opens an external site; "Space, Networks, and the Saint-Simonians" (Grey Room, 2010) Link opens an external site; "Architecture, Space, and Abstraction in the Eighteenth-Century French Public Sphere," (Representations, 2008) Link opens an external site; and "The Hut and the Altar: Architectural Origins and the Public Sphere in Eighteenth-Century France" (Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture, 2007) Link opens an external site.


Richard Wittman. Ricostruire la chiesa. San Paolo fuori le mura nella Roma dell Ottocento. Roma: Viella, 2023.Richard Wittman. Architecture, Print Culture and the Public Sphere in Eighteenth-Century France. Oxford: Routledge, 2013.Richard Wittman. Architecture, culture de l'imprimé et sphère publique dans la France du xviiie siècle. Dijon: Les presses du réel, 2019.


Undergraduate Courses

6F   Introduction to Architecture and Planning
142A   Architecture and Planning in Seventeenth-Century Europe
142B   Architecture and Planning in Rome: Napoleon to Mussolini
142C   Paris and Rome in the Nineteenth Century
142D   Gardens, Land, and Landscape in the West: Renaissance to 1900
142E   Architecture, Planning, and Culture in Eighteenth-Century Paris
142AA   Architecture, Theory, and Town Planning in 19th-Century France
186S   Nineteenth-Century French Architecture - Theory and Practice
186S   Wren, Vanbrugh, and Hawksmoor
186SR   Architecture, Townplanning & Theory in Germany/Austria (1770-1871)
186SR   Architecture, Planning & Politics in Rome: from Napoleon to Mussolini (1798-1945)
French Gothic Architecture in the 12th and 13th Centuries

Graduate Seminars

2017   Architectural Theory (1800-1939)
2012   European Architectural Theory from the Renaissance to the Dawn of Modernism
2012   Nations and Nationalism in 19th-century European Architecture
2008   Theories and Methods in Architectural History
2006   Architecture and Print Culture (c.1530-c.1930)