Literature - Online

Literature Courses in London

Explore our exciting range of Literature courses, from Literary History, to specialist courses in Fiction, Poetry and Drama. We offer introductory and in-depth courses to suit all levels of interest and experience, where you can revisit classic texts and discover new writers.

Study online from the comfort of home, with classes that allow you to participate in discussions with fellow adult students and share your passion for literature as part of a learning community. We offer daytime, evening and weekend courses, both short and long. For more information, please see our guide to online learning.

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

Many students return to take more courses, telling us they enjoy being part of our City Lit literary community; others are inspired to progress onto university study.

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

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  1. Historical fiction: reimagining the past
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 26 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    What’s the unique appeal of historical fiction? Why do we read so much of it, and what are we looking for? This short online course investigates how historical novels reimagine the past for us as contemporary readers. Reading extracts from novels set in different periods, we’ll explore the pleasures and challenges of historical fiction, and how it works to bring unknown stories into view.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £36.00
  2. City Lit Evening Reading Group
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 27 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Share thoughts and ideas about what you are reading, with books chosen by the group. Please come to the first session with suggestions (contemporary fiction in paperback) and having read The Offing by Benjamin Myers. Monthly meetings on 27 Sept, 25 Oct, 29 Nov; 17 Jan, 21 Feb, 28 March, 09 May, 13 June, and 11 July.



    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 £79.00
  3. 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
  4. 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
  5. Poetry Please! Enjoying Poetry
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 3 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This weekend course is for those who enjoy reading and thinking about poetry and for those who would like to enjoy it more. It will look at a range of poetic examples from the 19th, 20th and 21st century. There will be some discussion of the meaning of form and technique and its impact on the poem and the reader, but students will also have plenty of opportunity to talk about emotional or individual responses to poems.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £36.00
  6. Autofiction: novels from life
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 5 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Life stories or novels? In recent years the term ‘autofiction’ has described the work of novelists whose material is, explicitly, their own life. This course reads a selection of fascinating novels which experiment to combine memoir, personal experience and invention. We’ll explore different styles of autofiction, ideas about this tricky and controversial category of writing, and our own responses to it as readers. We will think too about some of the ethical and cultural questions that autofiction raises.



    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
  7. John Keats: 'The Vale of Soul-Making'
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 9 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Keats pursued – vigorously and brilliantly – questions related to ultimate truths. We shall consider a representative selection of his poetry and letters, reflecting on how their creative insights can help to illuminate our own experience and aspirations.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £36.00
  8. 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
  9. New Asian American Literature: Ling Ma, Jenny Zhang, Charles Yu and Ocean Vuong
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 13 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    What is Asian American literature and how has it been defined? In this course we’ll unpack this question whilst exploring some of the most exciting texts which have emerged from this umbrella term in the last couple of years. We will also consider the history and context of Asian American literature as a category, if the texts under discussion share any common themes and whether authors themselves have embraced this label.



    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
  10. City Lit reading group (online)
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 15 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Share thoughts and ideas about what you are reading, with books chosen by the group. Please come to the first



    online session with suggestions (contemporary fiction in paperback) and having read 'Hamnet' by Maggie O'Farrell. Monthly meetings take place on 15/10, 19/11/21, 04/02, 04/03/22.



    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 £71.00 Concession £54.00
  11. An introduction to poetry
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 30 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Always wanted to read and discuss poetry? Enjoy this introduction to a range of poetry from the last 400 years and explore how the poets shape our responses.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £29.00 Senior fee £23.00 Concession £18.00
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  12. Machiavelli's 'The Prince': an introduction
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 30 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    One of the most poignant ideas that emerged from the Italian Renaissance was the centrality of mankind. This new society, in which man could shape his own destiny, led to a new type of ruler, which is perfectly described in Machiavelli's work.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £36.00
  13. Exploring Medieval Literature: Shakespeare and the Medieval Age
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 1 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Shakespeare is seen as the great writer of the Renaissance period in England, yet he was influenced by the literature and culture of preceding centuries. On this course we will consider several of Shakespeare’s plays, including Hamlet, King Lear, The Tempest, and various history plays, exploring various aspects of his writing to discover just how influential the medieval world was on his thought, language, and subject matter.



    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
  14. The Art of the Essay: women essayists and the bending of genre
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 1 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    We will go on a journey to investigate the art and form of the essay through a variety of women essayists from the early 20th century to the present day. We will explore the essay’s hazy boundaries between memoir, confession, nature writing, elegy, sermon, polemic and mystical/religious experience through key women essayists including Virginia Woolf, Simone Weil, Audre Lorde, Clarice Lispector, Kathleen Jamie, Anne Carson, and Claudia Rankine.



    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
  15. The European city in contemporary literature
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 2 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Reading our way through Paris, Madrid and Berlin, in this course we’ll be taking in some of the standout works of urban literature to have been written since 2000: texts that tell us about places, identities and contemporary life, and which prompt us to question how we think about, inhabit and visit cities.



    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

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