History, culture & writing

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. City Lit gift vouchers - the perfect gift
    Looking for that perfect present? Treat someone to the gift of learning with a course at City Lit. Available from £10, our gift vouchers can be used to book a place on any of our courses, from London walks and food tasting to museum visits, poetry and much more. Simply purchase your voucher and the recipient can choose from thousands of courses, at a time which suits them.
    From £10.00
  2. An introduction to Indian comparative religions
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Aug 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Ketan Varia
    The course is an introduction to Indian Religions. Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism all have common aspects, but also some fundamental differences in philosophy.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £30.00
  3. Plotinus and The One
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Aug 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  John Goff
    “THE ONE is all things and no one of them; the source of all things is not all things; all things are its possession … ” Plotinus.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £30.00
  4. Writing comedy for TV: a taster
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Aug 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Alan Nixon
    Do you want to find out more about writing comedy? Explore some fundamental aspects of humorous scriptwriting for television, beginning with sketches, and looking at sitcoms from initial idea through to finished script.



    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
    Rating:
    87% of 100
  5. Jump start your play
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Aug 2022 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Have you got a script idea but not yet put pen to paper? Or a script you started long ago but never finished? This intensive short course is like a dramaturgy bootcamp. You’ll inject some new energy into your idea – and get a headstart at writing it. A perfect motivator to finally fulfill those playwriting resolutions, suitable only for those with playwriting experience.



    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
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  6. How to write a novel
    Last Few Places, Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 15 Aug 2022 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Thomas McMullan
    This course deals with all aspects of novel writing technique and prose style. Ideal for fiction writers about to begin a novel or those with a novel at early draft stage.



    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:
    100% of 100
  7. Writing the city
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 21 Aug 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Rowan Hisayo Buchanan
    Through a combination of close observation and texts both old and new, you'll explore the depiction of inner city life in fiction, and write your own fiction inspired by the urban landscape in this short course.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £28.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  8. Taster: Meet the Victorians
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 5 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    Join us for a taster session in which we will explore the complex, enquiring and sometimes contradictory world of the Victorians, whose science, engineering, and development of industrial innovations changed the landscapes of Britain and the lives of its people.



    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
  9. Creative non-fiction: a taster
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 7 Sep 2022 (and 2 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Julie Garton
    Have you had experiences that will move, delight or entertain readers? This taster session in creative-non fiction explores approaches to capturing your most poignant moments and crafting them into inspiring pieces of literature.



    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
  10. 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
  11. Grammar for ancient languages: an introduction
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 12 Sep 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Suitable for complete beginners of ancient languages. Become familiar with the key grammar terminology and concepts that will enhance your learning. Highly recommended if you are starting to learn an ancient or classical language.



    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 £19.00
  12. Art history taster
    Course start date:  Mon 12 Sep 2022 (and 15 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
  13. In the footsteps of London's rebels
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  David Rosenberg
    Explore London's places of protest and discover the stories of radicals, agitators and campaigners who fought for social justice, equal rights and better lives for all from the 1830s to the 1930s.



    The first and the last sessions will be delivered via zoom. The other 10 sessions are guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £249.00 Senior fee £199.00 Concession £125.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  14. Latin American history: from the independence wars to the present
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    (Re)discover the troubled but exciting political and socio-economic history of Latin America, between dictatorship and democracy, boom and recession, and gain a deeper understanding of the current situation in the continent’s different countries.
    Full fee £259.00 Senior fee £207.00 Concession £130.00
  15. John Company: The Rise & Fall of the East India Company
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    Founded in 1600, by the 1800s the East India Company had become one of the most powerful trading companies in the world, laying the foundations for the transition to British crown rule in India in 1858. Join us as we explore key events in India and the EIC’s history – why did ‘John Company’ become so influential and how did Indian Nawabs and Mughal Emperors resist its seemingly ever-expanding powers?
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £70.00

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