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 online and in-person learning. 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. See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online courses.


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  1. Chinese history for beginners
    Course start date:  Mon 19 Jun 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Louise Green
    Want to dip into Chinese history? Join this beginners' course in Chinese History and learn about China's political, social, cultural and economic history, alongside major events of Chinese history.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £71.00 Concession £45.00
  2. Ways into creative writing: intensive
    Course start date:  Tue 25 Jul 2023 (and 11 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Leipciger
    Are you brand new to creative writing? Do you want to build your confidence in a supportive online environment alongside other beginners? This faster-pace short-course guides students taking their first steps on the path to becoming a creative writer.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00
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  3. Thinking through philosophy: a guide
    Course start date:  Mon 23 Oct 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Christopher Horner
    What is morality and what is it based on? Is the mind a ghost in the machine?

    What can I really know? This is a beginner’s introduction to how philosophy tackles questions like these and many others.
    Full fee £99.00
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  4. Accelerating cultures: technology and form from the 19th century to now
    Course start date:  Mon 15 Jan 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Do you ever get the sense that things are constantly speeding up? Well, you’re not the only one! Since industrialisation, writers and artists have explored the accelerating effect of technological advancement. From the new perceptions of space and time produced by the railways to Marinetti’s Manifesto of Futurism, art and culture has always been in dialogue with new technologies, and the new subjective experiences they produce has likewise influenced literary and artistic form. In this course we will explore a range of materials (literature, art, photography, film) from the last 200 years to consider how cultural representations of gathering speed continue to help us to negotiate the now.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £99.00 Concession £64.00
  5. The future of democracy
    Course start date:  Mon 15 Apr 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Christian Schnee
    Want to think about and discuss what makes and breaks a democracy? Join Dr. Christian Schnee to engage in this vital discussion.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £64.00
  6. Focus on: fashion in 16th century art
    Course start date:  Mon 3 Jun 2024

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Julie Barlow
    Do you know your codpiece from your farthingale? Why did the ruff become so fashionable? How do we identify figures in narrative and religious art? This short course explores the fascinating world of costume in 16th century European painting. Explore the socio-political context behind portraiture, how fashion was employed to convey status, and the impact of developments in textiles and trade.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
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