History, politics & economics

Explore History, Politics & Economics

Whether you’re fascinated by the past, wishing to keep up to date with current affairs, or to develop a deeper understanding of democracy and capitalism, we have the course for you.

City Lit offers a wide range of history, politics and economics courses on weekdays, evenings and weekends. Our courses vary from skills-based courses on oral and family history projects, to the history of empire, the history of London and the study of global powers and international politics.

Gain critical thinking and analytical skills

Courses in the Humanities help you understand our world today, and the history that has informed the political, social and economic dynamics of modern times. Our courses, including short day courses, lectures and longer-term study over several weeks or whole terms, aim to inform you of the issues that interest and matter to you. Our courses also encourage the development of wider skills such as critical thinking and analysis, listening and discussion skills, and evidence-based interpretation.

Online and classroom-based classes in London

This term we are running our history, politics and economics courses online to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our community. From January 2022 we will offer courses both online and in the classroom (please check specific courses on the website). Whether online or in person, our classes are always welcoming and open to everyone.

Learn from expert tutors

Our courses are taught by experts in their fields. Our tutors come from a range of backgrounds, and include academic experts, experienced educators, serving politicians, acclaimed authors and renowned guides. Whoever your class is taught by, all our courses are intellectually rigorous and stimulating.

For more information about our live online courses, please see our guide to online learning.

Browse our range of online courses and courses in London below to choose your perfect option: both complete beginners and returning students are equally welcome.

Some of our courses take place in the classroom — learn more about Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit.

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  1. Modern France: from the Paris Commune to the Vichy Regime
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 3 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    After uncertain beginnings, the Third republic managed to survive numerous crises until the defeat of 1940 sealed its fate. Re(discover) this exciting period, its actors and how their policies shaped modern France.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £57.00
  2. The American century: the US from 1945 to 2021
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 3 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Dafydd Townley
    This interactive lecture outline course explores the political, social, and cultural development of the United States since the end of World War 2 to the present day.



    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 £70.00
  3. Curating stories: the value and practice of oral history
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 3 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Angela Platt
    Want to start gathering oral histories but not sure where to start? Already collecting oral histories but need a friendly and supportive space to discuss your project? Join us on this course to further define, plan and organise your project.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £57.00
  4. History of economic thought: from Adam Smith to neoliberalism
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 4 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Naresh Sonpar
    Want to learn about the the development of economic ideas and their inter-relationships with political ideas? Join this course to strengthen your understanding.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £149.00 Concession £66.00
  5. The emergence of modern America: the United States from 1865 to 1900
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 4 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Dafydd Townley
    In this follow-up course to “Slavery and the Civil War” we will discuss the next phase of American history, covering the years from 1865 to 1900.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £149.00 Concession £66.00
  6. Life in Elizabethan England
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 4 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    The Elizabethan era is long remembered as a ‘Golden Age’ of literature, theatre, learning and exploration, but what was daily life like for the poor, the artisan classes and the middle-classes during Elizabeth’s reign?



    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 £39.00
  7. Post war German history 1961 to reunification and beyond
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 9 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Rudolf Muhs
    This course offers a broad survey of German history from the sealing of the country’s division by the Berlin Wall to its unforeseen reunification in 1989-90 and its aftermath.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £149.00 Concession £66.00
  8. The Soviet Union: A history in Film, 1922-1991
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 9 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Nick Morgan
    This is an advanced course intended to use film as a primary source in exploring the history and culture of the Soviet Union in greater detail.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £191.00 Concession £105.00
  9. First nations before and in US history
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 9 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Max Carocci
    First nations' histories are often overlooked when studying at US history. Join us on this course to explore these ‘hidden histories’.



    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 £39.00
  10. Advanced political studies
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 9 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Benjamin Chwistek, Martin Jorgensen
    If you have a passion for politics, or have ever been interested in studying politics at a higher level, this course could be right for you. Whatever your political background, interests, or history, this course will give you a space for discussion and understanding at an advanced level.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £179.00 Concession £79.00
  11. Indian women and the Raj
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 10 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    Why does gender history matter and what can it tell us about the history of British colonialism and India? Join this six-week course to explore the representations and reality of Indian women’s lives during the British colonial era.



    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 £39.00
  12. Recent challenges to the European Union
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 10 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Hilke Gudel
    Learn about the recent challenges the European Union has faced and what it has done to mitigate these.



    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 £39.00
  13. Global issues: conflict
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 17 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Nomaan Hanif
    Many arguments have been put forward concerning the changing nature of conflict over the last century. Do states still matter in conflict or are we in a post-state age with new forms of war and types of conflict?



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £49.00 Senior fee £49.00 Concession £22.00
  14. Plants, people, politics and profits: the Brazilian Amazon through the lens of ethnobotany
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 18 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sandra Carvalho, Yasmin Hales, Letta Jones, Aleksandra Kaye
    What is ethnobotany and bio-piracy and why are they important? Bringing together horticulture, anthropology, history and political science, this course focuses on human-nature relationships, using Latin America as the prism. Join our four tutors to learn more about how humanity’s complex relationships with nature can be a new way of understanding.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £30.00

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