Contemporary and world literature courses

Explore our exciting new programme of online Literature courses in Contemporary and World Literature. From ‘The Contemporary African novel’ to ‘Japanese Crime Literature’, or ‘Migration and the Literary Imagination’ to ‘Environment and Ecology in contemporary fiction’, we offer a broad range of courses to spark your curiosity and enthusiasm.

Our online courses are taught through group discussion and short tutor presentations, in a supportive and friendly atmosphere. For more information about our live online courses, please see our guide to online learning

We are also delighted to welcome some new tutors to our programme, who bring with them a wealth of expertise and passion for their subjects. You can find out more about them here.


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  1. The Complete Ishiguro, Part 1: 1980-1999
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 29 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Take a deep dive into the world of Nobel laureate Kazuo Ishiguro, from his early short stories and TV screenplays to the first four novels, including The Remains of the Day (1989). Discover the influences, themes and context that led to the author’s development and explore the styles and techniques through which he expresses his unique vision.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £97.00
  2. 19th Century French and Russian Literature
    Last Few Places, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 1 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This online literature course explores classic shorter texts of 19th century French and Russian literature, discussing literary style, themes and contexts as a way of developing and sharing responses to celebrated European writing. From history and travel to memory and madness, the class tackles some of the finest works ever written. Among the French writers examined will be Balzac, de Nerval and Flaubert, with our Russians including Gogol, Turgenev, Tolstoy and Chekhov.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £97.00
  3. America in the 60s: culture and society
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 12 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The 1960s was the decade that profoundly changed American culture. We explore the trajectory of a decade, including the presidential terms of Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon, Vietnam, the civil rights movement, second wave feminism and radical changes in literature, art, music and film, all reflecting the historical turbulence of 1960s America.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £97.00
  4. 19th Century American Literature
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 4 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This class explores 19th century American literature, reading classic texts to broaden knowledge of literary history through a range of influential novels, stories and poems. Among the writers considered in their literary, political and cultural contexts will be Poe, Whitman, Dickinson, Hawthorne, Melville, and Twain.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £54.00
  5. World Fiction: hidden treasures
    Last Few Places, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 15 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Freshly translated or newly rediscovered gems of international writing from the second half of the 20th century, including The Waiting Years by Fumiko Enchi (Japan), Sunlight on a Broken Column by Attia Hosain (India/Britain), Snow Country by Yasunari Kawabata, The Coffer Dams by Kamala Markandaya (India/Britain), The Island by Ana Maria Matute (Spain), and The Moon and the Bonfires by Cesare Pavese (Italy).



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £199.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £121.00
  6. Russian and Eastern European poetry: a survey
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 23 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    A guided tour of the personalities and achievements of the extraordinary constellation of poets that emerged during the Soviet century and its aftermath, including Akhmatova, Pasternak, Mayakovsky and their contemporaries, Milosz, Szymborska, Herbert and Anna Swir (Poland), Popa (Serbia), Holub (Czech Republic), Sorescu, Mircea Ivanescu and Nina Cassian (Romania), and others.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £97.00
  7. A Century of Surrealist Literature
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 24 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Did the world need another ‘ism’ when André Breton published the Surrealist Manifesto in 1924? As a splinter movement from Dada, and borrowing its name from a term coined years before by Guillaume Apollinaire, was it even that original? We’ll explore how, despite its inauspicious origins, Surrealism grew to become one of the most influential artistic and literary styles of the 20th century.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £97.00

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