Online - Literature

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. Exploring Medieval Literature: Shakespeare and the Medieval Age
    Evening
    Course 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
  2. The Art of the Essay: women essayists and the bending of genre
    Course 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
  3. The European city in contemporary literature
    Evening
    Course 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
  4. Shakespeare's ghosts: Hamlet, Macbeth and Julius Caesar
    Course Date:  Wed 3 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online





    This online Literature course explores Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Macbeth and Julius Caesar, taking a close look at the ghosts that feature in these plays – Old Hamlet, Banquo and Julius Caesar - as a way of investigating some of their wider themes and concerns, including memory, grief, revenge, agency, power, ambition, guilt and the psyche.



    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 £103.00 Concession £79.00
  5. 19th Century American Literature
    Evening
    Course Date:  Thu 4 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This class explores 19th century American literature, reading classic texts to broaden knowledge of literary history through a range of influential novels, stories and poems. Among the writers considered in their literary, political and cultural contexts will be Poe, Whitman, Dickinson, Hawthorne, Melville, and Twain.

    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
  6. Battles, Riddles and Spells: the Old English Tradition 900 -1100
    Course Date:  Thu 4 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Great changes occurred in England between 900 and 1100. Viking invasions had turned to settlement, influencing the culture and language. Events in 1066 changed the ruling elite. The language used at court changed from Old English to Norman French. However, English was still the common tongue, and much of the great store of Old English poetry and prose was produced during this time. This course looks at the literature of 900-1100, as well as the turbulent events that affected and shaped English writing.

    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 £103.00 Concession £79.00
  7. Victorian fiction 1840 -1880: the rise of Realism
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 6 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The course will consider the Victorian novel over a period of 40 years from the perspective of realism and its importance in the development of the novel’s form, style and significance.



    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. 'The Sanction of Eternal Truth': exploring the poetry of Keats's Eighteenth-Century Forebears
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 13 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Too often it is assumed that the Romantic poets engineered a complete break with their eighteenth-century predecessors. By exploring the work of five of Keats’s gifted forebears, this course will allow us to engage in a fundamental and detailed reconsideration of that assumption.

    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
  9. 'Please come flying': how poetry helps us in troubled times
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 20 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Many of us have experienced isolation and increased stress during the pandemic. When life returns to normal, there may still be periods of loneliness. We will look at how poetry can help us in this situation by seeing how some fine poets have responded to isolation by writing some great poems.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £12.00
  10. The American Short Story
    Course Date:  Mon 20 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The short story is America’s outstanding literary form. The explosion of magazines in the 19th century led to a huge market in stories “to be taken down with a gulp.” Many of its greatest writers specialised in the form – including Edith Wharton, Flannery O’Connor, Ernest Hemingway, Raymond Carver, John Cheever, William Faulkner and Lorrie Moore – and made it a vivid barometer of American life.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £199.00 Senior fee £199.00 Concession £121.00
  11. Get together and read
    Course Date:  Thu 30 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Enjoy talking with other people about the things you have read? Want to share great stories, poems and drama? Come along and join the conversation. The group is led by a shared reading practitioner trained by The Reader Organisation.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £0.00 Senior fee £0.00 Concession £0.00
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