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. Early 20th Century Britain and Ireland
    Course start date:  Wed 26 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Peter Street
    The course explores both the political, economic, social and cultural history of Britain itself in these years and its dealings with Ireland, notably over Home Rule, Easter 1916 and the Anglo/Irish war and settlement, 1919-1922.



    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 £199.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £88.00
  2. Greek myths and their symbolism
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 26 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Maria Contos
    Myth permeated all aspects of ancient society and much the same can be said today. Investigate the relevance and perseverance of the Greek myth and why these tales continue to fascinate.



    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 £103.00 Concession £79.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  3. Transports of delight: London's railway stations
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 2 Feb 2022 (and 1 other date)

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

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    London's stations see over 1 billion journeys annually, but the buildings themselves are often ignored. Explore a different station and environs each week, discovering the architecture, history, stories and future of these lifelines of London.



    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 £61.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  4. Ancient American civilisations: the North
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 9 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Max Carocci
    Explore the little known history of pre-Columbian civilizations North of Mexico and their links to Aztec and other Mexican cultures.



    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 £79.00
  5. Creative non-fiction: an introduction
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 16 Feb 2022 (and 2 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Lucy Popescu
    This short introductory course explores the core elements of creative non-fiction across genres such as travel writing, the personal essay and life writing. On this course you will start to produce your own works of creative non-fiction.



    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:
    94% of 100
  6. 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
  7. Ways into creative writing: a gentle pace
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 19 Jan 2022 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Leipciger
    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 £36.00
  8. Ways into creative writing: an introduction
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022 (and 8 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Charlotte Heather
    Not sure whether creative writing is for you? Give it a try on one of these fun and supportive short courses covering the basics of fiction and poetry. Increase your confidence and produce work through guided exercises and discussion.



    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:
    94% of 100
  9. How to read a film: a beginners' guide to cinema
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 23 Feb 2022 (and 1 other date)

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

    Tutors:  Paul Sutton
    This course will develop your critical appreciation of the cinema by teaching you how to read and understand film texts. We will look at the elements that underpin film form – narrative, mise en scène, cinematography, editing and sound – alongside its historical development. We will consider film style by exploring classical, post-classical and art cinema and we will examine influential critical modes of analysis, such as genre, authorship and spectatorship.



    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 £60.00
    Rating:
    85% of 100
  10. The art and culture of 17th century London, part I
    Course start date:  Wed 2 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  OS - Off Site

    Tutors:  Julie Barlow
    Discover the 17th century: a time of upheaval in Europe, intercontinental trade, religious schisms and a wide range of artistic styles. See its art, architecture and design in London’s galleries and museums.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £103.00 Concession £79.00
  11. Writing fiction
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Jonathan Barnes
    Lovers of fiction can develop their creative writing skills on this practical intermediate course. You'll explore the fundamentals of fiction writing craft such as character and structure, and unlock your imagination to produce compelling prose. Suitable for those with some creative writing experience.



    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 £84.00
    Rating:
    87% of 100
  12. Ways into poetry
    Evening
    Course start date:  Thu 13 Jan 2022 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Lawrence Bradby
    Relatively new to writing poetry? This inspiring course offers an opportunity to experiment with language and a variety of poetic devices alongside fellow emerging poets. Discover the key elements of a poem in a friendly and interactive class.



    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 £84.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  13. Ways into creative writing
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022 (and 9 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Christina Dunhill
    Want to have a go at creative writing in a supportive environment? Join one of these introductory courses. Guided exercises will give you the tools to explore language creatively and find your own writing voice.



    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 £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £84.00
    Rating:
    97% of 100
  14. The 60 minute writer
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022 (and 8 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Tasha Kavanagh
    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 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 £40.00
    Rating:
    96% of 100
  15. Writing for children
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 21 Sep 2021 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Andrew Weale
    Always wanted to write a children's book? This practical course will develop your ability to write for different age groups and genres of contemporary children's fiction. (Please note this two-term course is payable in two instalments.).



    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 £84.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100

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