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. What the poem wants: drafting and editing workshop
    Course start date:  Mon 25 Jul 2022 (and 1 other date)

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

    Tutors:  Christina Dunhill
    Write fast and edit fast in this poem-blitzing workshop. Learn to step back, look at your poem and think about the different directions it might take. Practise ruthlessness as well as care in the poem’s service.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £189.00 Concession £76.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  2. Reading for children's writers
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 19 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Penny Joelson
    Explore recently published successful books for children, mainly by UK authors, and produce your own writing inspired by them. The course will cover pictures books, middle grade and young adult.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £179.00 Concession £90.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  3. Creative non-fiction
    Evening
    Course start date:  Mon 25 Apr 2022 (and 13 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Paul Laffan
    Explore practical and imaginative approaches to creative non fiction, including travel writing, life writing and the essay. Analyse published work, produce your own pieces, and benefit from detailed feedback.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
  4. Starting your novel
    Evening
    Course start date:  Mon 25 Apr 2022 (and 6 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Vicky Grut
    Got a great idea for a novel? Jump start your project in this supportive course that covers craft basics such as character and plot. Ideal for writers of fiction with some experience who have an idea for a novel.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  5. Art and architecture of Ancient India
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 29 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Arjmand Ahmad
    India's three indigenous religions - Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism - have given rise to one of the oldest artistic civilisations in the world. Learn more about the art and architecture of Ancient India in this introductory course.



    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 £159.00 Concession £129.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  6. Dickens and Trollope: Giants of the 19th Century Novel
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 6 Oct 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Beatrice Ashton-Lelliott
    The Victorian period produced some of Britain’s most well-known canonical authors, all of whom drew inspiration from the challenges of their times. Together we’ll explore three novels from some of the period’s most popular writers and consider what anxieties they attempted to understand, and often satirise, through their works. We’ll meet a unique cast of characters along the way, including opium addicts, macabre folk parades, and industrial tycoons.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £143.00 Concession £116.00
  7. Writing for children: advanced
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 9 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Penny Joelson
    This supportive and interactive course for advanced children's writers will help deepen your understanding of the genre and acquire techniques to hone your writing.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £179.00 Concession £90.00
  8. Global issues
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 10 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    Through the study of some of the key actors and main issues that affect people across continents, you will gain the skills and knowledge to analyse today’s world and the challenges we all face.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £95.00
  9. Introduction to Latin American art
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 13 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Explore the art of Latin America from indigenous cultures to colonisation and through the revolutions of the 20th and 21st centuries.



    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 £103.00
  10. Craft focus: introduction to novel plotting
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 15 Jan 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jonathan Barnes
    If you've made a start on your novel, but need help getting it into shape, this course provides a flexible template that will help you to overcome the obstacles ahead.



    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 £100.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  11. Rome: from Republic to Empire - 120 BC to 20 AD
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 17 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sean Gabb
    In 120 BC, Rome was a city-state with functioning republican institutions that made room for a substantial element of democracy. It was also the dominant power in the Mediterranean World. By 20 AD, Rome was the capital of an autocratic empire that covered virtually the whole of the Mediterranean World and most of its surrounding territories. Between these dates, Rome saw the collapse of its ancient governing institutions in an orgy of political assassination, civil wars, purges, and military dictatorships.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £123.00
  12. London's hidden art and architecture
    Course start date:  Wed 18 Jan 2023 (and 1 other date)

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

    Tutors:  Julie Barlow
    Uncover a whole new side of London, from Roman times to the present day through a series of virtual visits to art galleries and historic sites.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £123.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  13. The Crusades as seen from Western, Byzantine and Islamic perspectives
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 19 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sean Gabb
    The Crusades are the defining event of the Middle Ages. They brought the very different civilisations of Western Europe, Byzantium and Islam into an extended period of both conflict and peaceful co-existence. The biggest loser was the Byzantine Empire, which emerged shattered and doomed from the encounter. The biggest winner was Western Europe, which was brought in close contact with the older and more sophisticated civilisations of the East, and which found its own progress greatly hastened. As for Islam, the Crusades ensured that the Near East would be gradually brought under the long hegemony of the Ottomans.







    This was an age of striking individuals – Alexius, Bohemond, Enrico Dandolo, Saladin, Richard the Lion Heart, and many others. It is an age filled with unforgettable – and possibly true – stories of heroism and atrocity.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £110.00
  14. Editing your children's novel
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 25 Apr 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Penny Joelson
    If you have a first draft of a novel for children or young adults that is ready for editing, this lively course will help you to get your manuscript into shape for submission to agents.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £179.00 Concession £90.00
  15. Slavery & the Black Atlantic: Resistance, Rebellions & Revolutions
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 25 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    On this six-week course we will explore the ways in which Africans fought the system of chattel slavery, from their enslavement in Africa and on slave ships, to every day acts of resistance, large-scale organized rebellions, and guerrilla-style wars in the Caribbean colonies.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £85.00

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