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. Writing for magazines
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 2 Nov 2021 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Get inspired to write on this practical course for freelance journalists and bloggers. Learn to carry out research, interview people, pitch and publish stories, and build your presence on social media.



    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
  2. Transports of delight: London's railway stations
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and Onsite) (other locations are available)

    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. The course starts with an initial zoom lecture followed by a series of walking tours.



    This course will be delivered online and onsite. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £74.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  3. Art and memory
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 12 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    How have artists since 1960 engaged with the recent history and memory of political conflict? What role have artists had in remembering a difficult or traumatic past? What are the connections between memory and national identity in their work?



    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
  4. Writing a memoir (continuation)
    Evening
    Course start date:  Fri 5 Nov 2021 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Some moments in our lives are so powerful they beg to be shared with the world. This continuation course guides students in developing a memoir project that will resonate and inspire.



    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:
    100% of 100
  5. Reading for writers: great plays (a fortnightly course)
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 19 Jan 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Imitation is more than just a form of flattery - it's a tool to discover your own writing craft! Delve into a series of famous playscripts, appreciating their mechanics and the unique approaches they use to represent the world. Then apply the insights gained to your own writing through in-class exercises.



    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
  6. Ancient American civilisations: the North
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 9 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    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
  7. Advanced creative non-fiction: workshop
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 8 Jun 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    This advanced workshop is designed for students who have already completed introductory and intermediate creative-non fiction courses and would like to focus on workshopping their writing.



    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:
    100% of 100
  8. The art of Byzantium
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 23 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    A study of the unique visual flavour of Byzantine art and architecture, the development of a range of craft industries, and the impact of Byzantium on other 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
  9. The art and culture of 17th century London, part I
    Course start date:  Wed 2 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  OS - Off Site

    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
  10. The art and culture of 17th century London, part II
    Course start date:  Wed 27 Apr 2022

    Location on this date:  OS - Off Site

    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. Islamic art in 25 objects
    Course start date:  Wed 27 Apr 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Discover important objects of Islamic Art dating across a more than a millennium in London galleries. We will study world-famous objects, discover lesser known gems, study their context and understand how they relate to one another and the wider world.



    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 £129.00 Senior fee £103.00 Concession £79.00
  12. Stories of London
    Course start date:  Wed 4 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and Onsite)

    Explore London’s rich history in a series of guided walks. Each week we examine a different neighbourhood & era from the capital’s past. We look at its people, both rich and poor, & the events that shaped the city.



    Initial lecture via Zoom followed by 6 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and onsite. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £119.00 Concession £66.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  13. 'Animals in 20th and 21st century fiction
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 4 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Animals leap, crawl, hop, and gallop across the pages of modern fiction. Why do authors write about animals? What effect does it have on us as readers when we encounter animals in novels and short stories? From Beatrix Potter and Black Beauty to the contemporary novel, this course explores the role of the animal in modern literature. Themes that we will think about together include: animal suffering, animals in depictions of childhood, and animal transformations and dehumanisation. Includes 'Happiness' (2018) by Aminatta Forna and writings by J.M. Coewtzee and John Berger.



    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
  14. London's smaller art collections
    Course start date:  Fri 5 Nov 2021 (and 1 other date)

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

    Discover some of London’s fascinating smaller art collections and hidden art treasures on this online art history course.



    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:
    98% of 100
  15. Writing romance
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 3 Nov 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    It is a truth universally acknowledged that a writer in possession of a single pen can compose an unforgettable romance novel. This interactive course will guide students through the plotting of modern romance stories.



    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:
    100% of 100

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