City Lit Blog

Women and City Lit

Story added 21st Feb 2019

Throughout our 100 years City Lit has played a significant role in educating female Londoners. Empowerment through education – regardless of gender – has been at the centre of our activities throughout this time. Since we opened our doors millions of women have benefitted from City Lit’s broad and flexible courses, managing study alongside work, and other responsibilities. 

We have many inspiring women amongst our alumni including international best-selling writer Malorie Blackman who attended writing courses here at City Lit and Lucille Lewin, founder of high street fashion brand ‘Whistles’, who pursued her passion for ceramics completing a City Lit Ceramics Diploma and completed her Masters at the Royal College of Art in 2017. She has exhibited at the Saatchi Gallery and her work is held in private collections internationally. 

As an employer, City Lit is committed to equality and inclusion, and with 46% of our Governing Body, 43% of our Executive Committee and 65% of all staff and tutors being women, City Lit certainly recognises itself in regards to the International Women’s Day campaign #BalanceforBetter!

Throughout our broad programmes, our teachers take every opportunity to promote the achievements of women across arts, culture, and social history.

To celebrate International Women’s Day on Thursday 7th and Friday 8th March (and all through the coming months) we have a range of events and activities happening exploring and celebrating the significant contributions made by women to life, society and culture…

Where is Feminism now? 

An audience with Heidi Mirza, Hudda Khaireh and colleagues of the arts Collective Thick/er Black lines. The 2019 IDW hashtag is #BalanceForBetter – Better The Balance, Better The World. It is in this context that the City Lit Counselling & Psychology department embrak on a very important conversation centering on the trajectory of Feminism leading to the development of Black Feminism. We are asking; What is it? Who is it for? Why is it important? Thursday 7 March, 18:30-20:30, John Lyon's Theatre at City Lit 
> Book your ticket

An evening of spoken word...

The Time I almost...
Thursday 7 March, 19:00-21:30, Star of Kings pub in King's Cross 
Entrance £3 with proceeds going to Women's Aid. 
> Book your ticket

IWD in the Student Centre

Drop in to our Student Centre on the Mezzanine on Friday 8 March and listen to singer, conductor, teacher and researcher Michele Nova speak about her career and life. Michelle is a well-respected singing teacher of the Bel Canto technique and a musical director of a successful ensemble. She is also a published author and researcher of sound vibration for health. 16:00-1700, M03 (Student Centre) contact or visit the help desk in the Student Centre. 

Upcoming courses and workshops: 

Inspirational women at The National Portrait Gallery (starts Thursday 14 March)

Writing strong women (Friday 8 March) 

Women in art 1400-1800 (starts Friday 8 May) 

Re-imaging the horror film in the 21st century: women, race and the family (starts Saturday 2 March)

Roman women (Saturday 2 March) 

Women in art: politics of embodiment (Wednesday 5 June) 

Our female artists and writers often use art, creative writing and poetry as an opportunity to explore, champion and challenge gender roles and women’s issues. Last year our performing arts students performed Her Naked Skin, exploring the history of the suffragette movement. It was the centenary year of the first women to get the vote and with a statue of Millicent Fawcett unveiled in Parliament Square; 'Her Naked Skin' seemed the perfect choice. 'Her Naked Skin' is a 2008 play and was the first original play by a female writer to be produced at the Olivier Theatre at The National. 

As City Lit moves into its second century we will continue to inspire, champion, celebrate, enable, empower and support women from all across London through learning to work towards greater balance – in education, the arts, culture, the workplace and society as a whole.