History, culture & writing - Online

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.

Courses available both in-person and online

We offer a range of 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, you’ll receive the same great City Lit experience. See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online 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.

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  1. The odd couple: Presidents Ford and Carter
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 30 Jun 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Mark Malcomson
    Presidents Ford and Carter, who only served just over six years between them, often feel like relatively insignificant figures compared with other post-War Presidents. However, they served at a tumultuous time in both the United States and in the World. We will look at both men as individuals, their lives and reflect back on their presidencies and their legacies.



    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 £19.00 Concession £8.00
  2. Modernist Outsiders
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 7 Jul 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Stephen Winfield
    Kafka, Beckett, Pessoa, Schulz, Walser, Lispector: what does it mean to be a literary outsider, socially, intellectually, geographically? How does such a condition affect the quality of your imagining, your ability to build and sustain a personal vision that is at the same time sufficiently responsive to the concerns of the world around you?



    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 £42.00
  3. The representation of women in Islamic art
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 7 Jul 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Roberta Marin
    Islam prohibits the depiction of living beings in religious contexts. However, human and animal representations are permitted on works of art and architectural decorations in a secular setting. But how are women portrayed over the centuries? Do they play a leading role in the artistic repertoire? Do they convey positive or negative messages? In this short course we will try to answer these questions by considering some of the most notable examples of women representations in various media.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
  4. Mighty Madonnas and wild women: picturing feminine power in Renaissance Italy
    Last Few Places, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 7 Jul 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Lydia Goodson
    Join us for an exploration of the multi-faceted depictions of feminine power in Renaissance Italy. Discover how artworks tell us about the women depicted and about the men who desired them.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
  5. The women who changed history
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 7 Jul 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Cheshire
    This online course will look at a series of mainstream feature films, including Silkwood (Mike Nichols 1984 US), Made in Dagenham (Nigel Cole 2010 UK) and Erin Brockovich (Steven Soderbergh 2000 US), which are based on historical incidents in which women took a stand for better working and/or living conditions. We'll explore the real women who changed history via their political/social activism; their on screen counterparts, and we will have a look at how filmmakers shaped their narratives for the silver screen.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
  6. Ways into poetry: an introduction
    Evening
    Course start date:  Thu 23 Feb 2023 (and 7 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Billie Manning
    Are you just starting to write poetry? This inspiring short course offers an opportunity to experiment with language and a variety of poetic devices. Discover the key elements of a poem in a friendly and interactive class.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £109.00 Concession £44.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  7. Creative non-fiction: an introduction
    Evening
    Course start date:  Thu 9 Jun 2022 (and 5 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Claire Collison
    This short introductory course explores the core elements of creative non-fiction across genres such as travel writing, the personal essay and life writing. On this course you will start to produce your own works of creative non-fiction.



    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 £52.00
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  8. Ways into creative writing: an introduction
    Evening
    Course start date:  Thu 23 Feb 2023 (and 14 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Tasha Kavanagh
    Not sure whether creative writing is for you? Give it a try on one of these fun and supportive short courses covering the basics of fiction and poetry. Increase your confidence and produce work through guided exercises and discussion.



    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 £36.00
    Rating:
    93% of 100
  9. Writing the personal: autobiographical theatre
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 14 Jul 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Learn how to select and shape your own life experiences into a dynamic text for live performance on this supportive online course. Suitable for those with some experience of creative writing.



    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 £28.00
  10. The Odyssey reading group (in translation)
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 14 Jul 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Justin Murray
    Homer’s epic tale of Odysseus’ journey home after the Trojan War may now be over 2,500 years old but it still has much to tell us about the Ancient Greek world that is still relevant today. Explore this great work in translation.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £99.00 Concession £60.00
    Rating:
    80% of 100
  11. Taster: The Tudor kings and queens
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 8 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter




    Television dramas, novels, plays, films…What exactly is it about the Tudor dynasty that captures our historical imagination? Join us for this taster session to explore the social, political and religious lives of this iconic royal family.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
  12. History taster
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Martin Jorgensen
    What is history? What does history mean to you? Is history important to society? Why or why not? Who gets to decide what and whose history is important? What are the implications of this? There are many reasons and ways to engage with history. With this course, we scratch the surface of the vast universe that is history to give you a taster.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  13. Art in Britain 1950-2000 - 'This is Tomorrow' (Part 1)
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Chantal Condron
    Discover the work of selected British artists whose innovative practice shaped the development of modern art in Britain from the 1950s to the 1970s. Explore how and why the ideas and themes behind their work continue to be relevant to today’s audiences.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £87.00 Concession £71.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  14. Film Studies Taster
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Dec 2022 (and 4 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  John Wischmeyer
    Learn how to evaluate and discuss films while enjoying a working example of a City Lit Film Studies class. In this class we will view and explore clips from a number of films, including popular remakes, enabling us to consider and compare themes and techniques from differing filmmaking countries. There will be a chance to review – in brief – film courses at City Lit (January - September 2023).



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £7.00
  15. The Great (European) Powers and the Ottoman Empire: the Eastern Question, 1768-1914
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    The decline of the Ottoman Empire shaped the relations with and between the Great Powers, giving birth to new countries and spheres of influence, the legacy of which is still felt to this day.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £259.00 Senior fee £259.00 Concession £130.00

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