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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.

Study in-person at City Lit or offsite, or online from the comfort of home, with interactive classes that allow you to participate in discussions with fellow adult students. We offer daytime, evening and weekend courses, both short and long. For more information on our online courses, please see our guide to online learning.

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.

Some of our courses take place in the classroom — learn more about Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit.

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  1. Being in the world: Heidegger's philosophy
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    “The being of 'being' is itself not a being”. Questioning the meaning of ‘Being’ lies at the root of Heidegger’s critique of the ‘crisis’ of Western culture that his philosophy sought to overcome.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £134.00
    Rating:
    87% of 100
  2. The great philosophers
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the ideas of major philosophers from Plato to Sartre. How does Western philosophy differ from religion



    and science? What problems have the great philosophers tried to solve?



    .



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £239.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  3. Understanding the modern world
    Evening
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022 (and 1 other date)

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

    Explore the ideas of four key thinkers whose ideas have vitally shaped our world. Examine their views on morality, meaning, the role and status of women, human nature, political and economic injustice and much more.



    NB: No class on 7/03/2022 and 14/03/2022.



    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 £79.00
    Rating:
    91% of 100
  4. Modern political philosophy: ideas and ideologies in the 21st century
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    What are the key philosophical ideas behind the issues and debates of today? This is an opportunity to explore in more depth the concepts and ideologies that are shaping the politics of the 21st century. NB: No class on 08/03/2022.



    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 £79.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  5. The philosophical Hamlet: life, death and everything in between
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Can we ever escape our past? Can we act to change our future? This course examines various philosophical themes through an engagement of different philosophical traditions and William Shakespeare’s Hamlet.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £191.00 Concession £105.00
  6. The Emperor of Ice Cream: why Wallace Stevens, Marianne Moore and Frank O'Hara are important
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    We will explore the work of these three major 20th century American poets, focussing on what is original about their work and how they changed people’s understanding of what is possible in poetry. We will look at how their poetry developed over their writing lifetimes, how they saw their work in relation to the poetry of the past and present, and how their poetry reflected or otherwise gave meaning to their lives – Stevens as a lifelong insurance lawyer, Moore as an unmarried woman without a profession and living with her mother, and O’Hara as an art curator as out-gay as it was possible to be until his untimely death in 1960.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £97.00
  7. The 60 minute writer
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 22 Sep 2021 (and 7 other dates)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street (other locations are available)

    Fit creative writing into your busy day: a relaxed, informal rolling programme for writers of all levels of experience who enjoy being thrown new ideas and experimenting with poetry and prose.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £99.00 Concession £40.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  8. Philosophy and memory
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    What is memory? How does memory impact our sense of self and time? Why does memory often go wrong? If our memory is unreliable, can it provide knowledge of our personal past? What is collective memory? This course explores memory from philosophical and psychological perspectives.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £191.00 Concession £105.00
  9. Selves, persons, and agents
    Course start date:  Wed 12 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Who am I? Is there such a thing as “my true self”? Consider these questions, and more, from a philosophical perspective.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £96.00
  10. Makers of the Medieval North
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 13 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    lExplore the lives and achievements of some of the most influential men and women of faith and action in northern Europe during the earlier medieval period.



    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 £79.00
  11. Craft focus: grammar, syntax, and style for creative writers
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 24 Sep 2021 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Learn how and why the rules and conventions of language matter in this course, which combines creative writing with opportunities to learn/revise essential points of grammar and useful literary concepts. Suitable for beginning writers looking to build confidence, and those with more experience who would like to practise these essential skills.



    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 £72.00
  12. Philosophy and cultural theory
    Course start date:  Fri 14 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    We will look the philosophical underpinnings of culture through the writings of key philosophers who engage critically with the self images of the post enlightenment era. In particular we well look at Ideology, language and art in the context of cultural reproduction.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £191.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  13. Renaissance and Decline – Egypt from the 26th Dynasty to Alexander the Great
    Course start date:  Tue 18 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Assyrian power is at an end. Psammetichus 1 creates a new Dynasty and launches a period of renewal, a political and cultural renaissance. Herodotus, the ‘first historian’ tells vivid stories about the characters and events in this dramatic period. Persia invades and conquers the Nile Valley before being expelled in turn by Alexander the Great.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £134.00
  14. Classical civilisation – Part 2: Imperial Athens, Democracy and Empire
    Course start date:  Wed 19 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Aristocratic rule in Athens is replaced by a new regime (both more and less democratic than we understand the term today!) Under the leadership of Pericles, the city now embarks on years of imperial expansion. A glorious decade of cultural and artistic achievement follows with new ideas in art, drama, science, philosophy, medicine, politics and oratory. All this is terminated by the trauma of the Peloponnesian war.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £134.00
  15. The rise of civilisation in ancient Greece - Part 1: The Aegean in the Bronze Age
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 20 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    The origins of civilization in the Aegean. Lovely marble statuettes from the Cyclades. Magnificent palaces in Crete inspired by royal buildings in the Levant. Knossos with its splendid frescoes excavated by Evans. Sinister myths about the labyrinth and the Minotaur.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £134.00

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