What is the course about?
As London’s first major manufacturing area, the East End became a magnet for people looking for work not just
from other parts of Britain but for immigrants and refugees too. But the late 19th century writer JH Mackay
described the area as “the hell of poverty”. The people of the East End worked and campaigned to change their
economic circumstances, their neighbourhoods and their cultural environment. Libraries, theatres and art galleries
were established, social housing was built, trade unionists took strike action, and councillors went to prison. Several prominent women were among the motivators of change. This course charts those changes decade by decade.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
The virtual walks will follow a consecutive chronological pattern, one decade at a time. Each walk will focus on particular theme for a particular decade. the topics will will include issues such as immigration, housing, social reformers, the First World War, suffragettes, overcoming community divides. Where relevant we will use extracts from contemporary writers, both fiction and non-fiction.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
Identify the main ways in which the East End changed over these decades
List some key individuals who initiated campaigns and processes of change
Describe the impact of some of these changes on the local area and its population.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
No particular skills needed just enthusiasm for the subject.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
An initial lecture/workshop will set the background scene for the period we will study, and
the places through which we will be taking virtual walks. This will be followed by a series of virtual walking tours focusing on specific issues, initiatives, individuals and movements. After each session you will receive an electronic sheet summarising key points.
Students will be encouraged to ask questions and raise discussion points. The final
session will draw together threads from the different walks to consolidate knowledge gained and draw conclusions form the learning. No work is required outside of class although you will be directed to additional reading that you may wish to undertake.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
There are no additional costs.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Any of the London history courses or guided walks starting in September. Please see the City Lit website for further details.