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.

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 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. Central African politics for beginners
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 31 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Hilke Gudel
    Join us learn about the history, institutions and issues that are essential for understanding recent political developments in Central Africa.



    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 £45.00
  2. Twentieth Century British Fiction
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 31 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Lewis Ward
    On this course, we will trace the development of the British novel in the second half of the twentieth century through influential examples by Elizabeth Bowen, Iris Murdoch, J.G. Ballard and Julian Barnes. Our journey will include elements of spy fiction, existentialist thought, prophetic dystopia and an audacious attempt to write the history of the world in just ten and half chapters.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £139.00 Concession £90.00
  3. Image and identity: 20th century Chinese art and cinema
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 1 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Meitao Qu
    Explore the art of Chinese artists and filmmakers from the turn of the 20th century to the turn of the 21st, as they try to make sense of a world on the cusp between the old and the new, marked by encounters with imperialism and iconoclasm. Learn what place art had in socio-political movements, and how it reflected the hopes and anxieties of its time.



    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 £71.00
  4. Memories of authoritarian regimes in 20th Century Latin America
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 2 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Anna Grimaldi
    This course explores the aftermath of authoritarian and military regimes in Latin America, focusing on Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Guatemala.



    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 £55.00
  5. Friday lates: Jean-Michel Basquiat: painting history
    Last Few Places, Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Explore how Jean-Michel Basquiat used art history, from Ancient Africa to Abstract Expressionism, to dialogue with contemporary culture and issues of racism, money and fame.



    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 £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  6. A taste of poetry
    Evening
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Feb 2023 (and 2 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Billie Manning
    This short, fun taster course is the perfect starting point for students who are writing for the first time or new to the poetry path. Join us for thought-provoking writing exercises and poetry theory for beginners.



    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 £35.00
    Rating:
    85% of 100
  7. Heaven and hell in world religions
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Vanessa King
    Compare and contrast the afterlife beliefs of the five major religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, Christianity and Judaism. Explore how these ideas developed and influenced each other.



    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 £169.00 Concession £85.00
  8. From markets to malls: the history of shopping in London
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 7 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Diane Burstein
    From the City markets and shops of Cheapside (Medieval London’s Oxford Street) we move via the historic specialist shops of St James’s to the grand department stores and London markets. Discover how Londoners changed their shopping habits through the years and learn about the history of some of our most famous stores. A shop founded by a royal footman, a 17th century hatter, the department store owner who went to jail for expanding his business and the store which was the scene of its owner’s murder all feature.



    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 £10.00
  9. America in the 30s: culture and society
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 7 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Mark Malcomson, Mick McAloon, Dale Mineshima-Lowe, Trish Shaw, Patricia Sweeney, Ian Tucknott
    From the Great Depression to the New Deal, from Swing and big band music to gangster films and screwball comedies, this online intertextual course explores the political, social and cultural context of 1930s America through a study of literature, history, music, film and art of the period. With different tutors for each specialism, the course provides a 'taster' in each subject as a gateway to further study in understanding this fascinating period in American culture and society.



    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 £71.00
  10. Ways into creative writing: a gentle pace
    Evening
    Course start date:  Mon 6 Mar 2023 (and 2 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Tasha Kavanagh
    Are you brand new to creative writing? Do you want to build your confidence in a supportive environment alongside other beginners? This gentle 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 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £45.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  11. The Odyssey reading group (in translation)
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 8 Feb 2023 (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 £64.00
    Rating:
    84% of 100
  12. China's development aid in Africa, Central Asia and South Asia: aid or political strategy?
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 9 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Zannis Kairis
    China has risen to become the world’s largest development aid provider. This has been variously described as a form of neocolonialism, an expression of economic expediency, and a generous aid project. This course will critically review these arguments and help learners make their own judgements.



    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 £50.00
  13. Economics for beginners
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 9 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Naresh Sonpar
    Economics is about what drives human behaviour in making decisions faced with limited resources. Join this online course to learn a toolkit of skills, approaches and ways of thinking that you can apply to a wide range of problems.



    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 £45.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  14. Art history taster
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 18 Jan 2023 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Curious about art history? Join us for this taster session where we explore different ways into visual art and its histories, from the ancient to the contemporary.



    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:
    98% of 100
  15. Picture book writing
    Evening
    Course start date:  Mon 13 Feb 2023 (and 6 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Lou Kuenzler
    Would you like to write a picture book text for young children? This course is designed for children's writers and for illustrators wishing to write their own stories; a starter course to develop both your ideas and your technique.



    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 £65.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100

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