History, culture & writing - Keeley Street

Explore History, Culture & Writing

Explore our extraordinary range of History, Culture and Writing courses and lectures. We offer both introductory and specialist in-depth courses to suit all levels of interest and experience, from ‘How to read a film’ and World literature, to Creative non-fiction writing courses and American history and Politics courses.

Our tutors are experts in their fields and experienced educators; many have published, teach in universities or share their expertise in the media. Tutors share their knowledge and passion through presentations, readings, interactive discussion and exercises, analysis, and other activities.

Many students return to take more courses, telling us they enjoy being part of our City Lit Learning community.

Our popular courses often sell out quickly, so we invite you to browse and book your place now.

Courses available both in-person and online

We offer a range of long and short courses allowing you to choose between in-person and online learning.

Learn in the centre of London with our in-person courses. Our purpose-built facilities in Covent Garden mean we are ideally located and easy to get to. 

See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online courses.

All our courses are live, interactive, and taught by expert tutors. No matter how you prefer to learn, we've got the class for you.

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  1. Art in the age of Napoleon: politics, painting & propaganda
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 27 Apr 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Rachel Sanders
    Explore the art of Napoleonic Europe via issues such as political and social upheaval, Neo-Classical priorities, and the rise of Romanticism, in the work of artists such as David and Goya.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  2. Looking at design: Arts and Crafts to Art Deco
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 4 May 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Rachel Sanders
    Study the design reform movements – Arts and Crafts, Aesthetic Movement, Art Nouveau and Art Deco – and analyse a wide range of products, including fashion and textiles, graphics, furniture and architecture within their social, historic and artistic context. Includes a museum visit.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £64.00
  3. Exploring the memory politics of East Asia
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 4 May 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Qiuyang Chen
    Discover how memory shapes politics in East Asia. Explore pivotal case studies from China, South Korea, and Japan to understand the impact of collective memory on national identities and international relations.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  4. Robert Altman: The long goodbye to Hollywood
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 1 Jun 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  John Wischmeyer
    Robert Altman served a long apprenticeship in movie-making before his great breakthrough , the Korean War comedy M*A*S*H (1969). It became a huge hit and won the Palme d'Or at Cannes, but also established Altman's inimitable use of sound and image, and his gift for handling a repertory company of actors. The 1970s then became Altman's decade, with a string of masterpieces: McCabe and Mrs Miller (1971 revisionist western), The Long Goodbye (1973 revisionist Raymond Chandler), Thieves Like Us (1974 remake of Nicholas Ray’s 1948 They Live By Night), Nashville (1976 completely and absolutely original widescreen mural of America and Hollywood). In the 1980s Altman struggled to fund his work, but he was restored to prominence in 1992 with The Player, an acerbic take on Hollywood. Short Cuts, an inspired adaptation of Raymond Carver, and the Oscar-winning Gosford Park, (2001), underscored his comeback. (See separate but related courses on Once Upon a Time in New Hollywood, Francis Ford Coppola, David Lynch and the Coen brothers).
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  5. Introduction to film spectatorship
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 8 Jun 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Paul Sutton
    This course will provide a brief introduction to the history of film spectatorship, tracing its origins in the silent era up to the present day. The course will explore a number of films in detail, includingThe Truman Show (Peter Weir 1998 US), Cinema Paradiso (Giuseppe Tornatore 1998 Italy), The Matrix (Wachowskis 1999 US) and others.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
  6. Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
  7. The lost town of Lundenwic: mid-Saxon London 600-900 CE
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 8 Jun 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Stuart Brookes
    Look at the least known episodes in London's history, Lundenwic (AD 600-900) and Lundenburh (AD 900-1000).



    Includes an introductory lecture and guided walk.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £45.00
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  8. 20th century design: modern and post-modern
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 8 Jun 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Rachel Sanders
    Study the dominant design aesthetics of the twentieth century – its development, successes and fall from popularity. Movements will include Constructivism, the Bauhaus, Pop and Punk. Design practices will include graphics, architecture and furniture. #arthistory #weekendcourse #design #modernism #bauhaus.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £64.00
  9. Masters of style: reading and writing Virginia Woolf
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 15 Jun 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Thomas McMullan, Patricia Sweeney
    Virginia Woolf was one of the twentieth century’s greatest writers. Her approaches to writing character interiority were at the forefront of modernist literary innovations. This day workshop explores the literary interpretations of several seminal texts and writing exercises that encourage you to experiment with Woolf’s stream-of-consciousness style.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £59.00 Concession £30.00
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