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. A taste of poetry
    Evening
    Course start date:  Fri 18 Mar 2022 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street (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 two evenings of thought-provoking writing exercises and poetry theory for beginners.



    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 £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £28.00
    Rating:
    85% of 100
  2. Picture book writing
    Course start date:  Mon 17 Jan 2022 (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 £52.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  3. Introduction to journalism
    Course start date:  Wed 16 Feb 2022 (and 2 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Susan Grossman
    Discover the basic skills needed to become a freelance journalist. Learn how to write and sell news and features to newspapers, magazines, blogs and other online publications.



    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:
    97% of 100
  4. History of the European Union: from World War II to the 2004 expansion
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 1 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Hilke Gudel
    Explore the fascinating evolution of the European Union throughout its history.



    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 £39.00
  5. An Introduction to British Cinema
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 2 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Jon Wisbey
    Defining itself around themes such as British identity and class, and against the global appeal of Hollywood, British cinema nonetheless continues to find critical and popular acclaim both domestically and internationally. Explore British cinema through concepts including national cinema, realism, documentary, art cinema, popular cinema, 'heritage' film, and critical accounts of British cinema.



    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 £54.00
  6. The political economy of China’s aid policy: Mutually beneficial or Machiavellian?
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 2 Mar 2022

    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 £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £39.00
  7. Ways into poetry: a gentle pace
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 3 Mar 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Andrew Weale
    Are you brand new to writing poetry? Do you want to build your confidence in a supportive environment alongside other beginners in the craft? This gentle short course guides students taking their first steps on the path to becoming a poet.



    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:
    100% of 100
  8. The US Presidents who made the post war world
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 3 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Mark Malcomson
    Lecture based course covering the five American Presidents (Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon) who shaped the post-War world both in their own country and beyond. Both America and the world changed hugely during this period, often directly influenced by these five Presidents. Tutors: Mark Malcomson.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £79.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £35.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  9. Friday lates: launching the YBAS - from warehouse to stardom
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 4 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Julie Barlow
    Did the YBAs unleash new artistic creativity or were they simply ambitious, self-promoting young art students from Goldsmiths determined to shock? Explore their art and the exhibitions which launched them; Freeze (1988) and Sensation (1997).



    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
  10. Chinese Buddhist philosophy in a nutshell
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 7 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  John Goff
    "Every blade of grass, tree, pebble, and particle of dust is perfectly endowed with buddha nature …” — Zhanran. “If you meet the Buddha, kill the Buddha” — Linji.



    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 £30.00
  11. Micro-memoir: a taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 11 Mar 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Julie Garton
    A life is measured in moments as well as momentous occasions. This fun day workshop coaches students in the art of micro-memoir. Can you write about an instant that changed you in 200 words or less?



    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
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  12. Friday lates: the art of zines
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 11 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Christopher Collier
    Underground passions and radical imagery have defined so-called fanzines for over 80 years. From the earliest examples to today, we explore their content, technique and the relation of DIY culture to wider artistic practices.



    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
  13. Friday lates: poster art: print, pop and propaganda
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 25 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Christopher Collier
    Get a snapshot of the eye-catching and colourful world of poster art, from Belle Époque decadence to Avant-Garde dynamism; from Art Nouveau to Atelier Populaire, and the everyday glamour of Pop.



    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
  14. Memoir writing: a taster
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 28 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Julie Garton
    Do you have a personal story to tell that will move, delight, stir and inform readers? This short course guides students in planning and crafting a memoir.



    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
  15. Playwriting: a taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 28 Mar 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Give playwriting a try in this fun and supportive one-off taster session. Ideal if you want to unlock your imagination and express yourself, but need a bit of encouragement to get started.



    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

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