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. Writing for magazines
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022 (and 7 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Phyllis Richardson
    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.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £65.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  2. Exploring Medieval Literature: The Canterbury Tales
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Thomas White
    Pilgrimage, religion, social mores and foibles, exuberant women, and a drunk miller with a penchant for bashing down doors with his head! Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales are excellent examples of Middle English writing. The range of characters, diverse plotlines, energy and playfulness all offer a fine insight into 14th Century England. It’s medieval England’s most famous work; this is because Chaucer’s multi-layered writing style is varied, subtle, and brilliant.



    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 £64.00
    Rating:
    80% of 100
  3. Anthropology: what is anthropology?
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Max Carocci
    This introductory online course gives you the basic tools for an elementary understanding of anthropology. We will identify methods and areas of concern that distinguish it from sociology, history and other disciplines.



    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 £70.00
  4. Innovators: meet the Victorians
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    What did the Victorians do for us? Taking a different topic each week, we will explore a range of innovations in the era, from engineering, public health and industry, to crime detection and nursing.



    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 £70.00
  5. City Lit Evening Reading Group
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Claire Allen
    Share thoughts and ideas about what you are reading, with books chosen by the group. Please come to the first session with suggestions (contemporary fiction in paperback) and having read Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro. Monthly meetings on 26 Sept, 24 Oct, 28 Nov; 16 Jan, 20 Feb, 20 March, 08 May, 12 June, and 10 July.



    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 £90.00
  6. Political communication in the West in the 20th century
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Christian Schnee
    In the 2000s we saw the political communication move online, using social media, AI, network analysis etc. It is almost hard to imagine the times before this paradigm. Join Dr. Christian Schnee to explore political communication in the 20th century.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £50.00
  7. The Russian Empire 1700-1917
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 26 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Spyridon Tsoutsoumpis
    This module examines the history of the Russian Empire from the reign of Peter the Great to the Revolution of 1917 and the rise of Lenin to power.



    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 £50.00
  8. Writing from Life: from Maggie O'Farrell to Ocean Vuong
    Course start date:  Tue 27 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Kate Wilkinson
    What do we want and expect from ‘life stories’? How does this change when we read memoirs and novels? This course reads a selection of fascinating books and extracts, which experiment to combine memoir, personal experience and invention in different ways. As well as memoirs we’ll study ‘autofiction’ – a relatively new description for the work of novelists whose material is, explicitly, their own life – and consider ideas about this tricky and at times controversial category of writing. We’ll think too about some of the ethical and cultural questions that ‘writing from life’ raises, including privacy, a right of reply, and factors that may affect a work’s critical reception.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £139.00 Concession £90.00
  9. Central Africa: looking beyond the 'failed state' label
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 27 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Hilke Gudel
    What is a 'failed state'? Why is Africa seen as the graveyard of 'failed states'?Learn about why nation states fail, what can be done about it and why we should be concerned as an international community.



    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 £55.00
  10. Writing an academic essay
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 27 Sep 2022 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sinead Keegan
    A crash course in essay writing – beginnings, middles and ends. Suitable for students on A-level and access courses or undergraduates.



    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 £50.00
  11. Starting your novel
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Oct 2022 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Vicky Grut
    Got a great idea for a novel? Jump start your project in this supportive course that covers craft basics such as character and plot. Ideal for writers of fiction with some experience who have an idea for a novel.



    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 £105.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  12. Introduction to Charles Booths’ London
    Course start date:  Tue 27 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Sarah Wise
    During this six-week course, we will explore aspects of Charles Booth’s landmark survey ‘Life & Labour of the People in London’, published in 17 volumes between 1889 and 1903.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £70.00
    Rating:
    97% of 100
  13. Colonial America: European Settlement 1560 – 1815
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 28 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Dafydd Townley
    The online course explores European settlement (British, French, Spanish, Russian, Swedish) of North America. It examines the differences between English colonies; the American Revolution; the formation of the United States; and the War of 1812.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £169.00 Concession £85.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  14. Understanding the Israel-Palestine conflict
    Course start date:  Wed 28 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Nomaan Hanif
    Trace the historical roots of this conflict and study the peace process of the 1990s: Madrid talks, Oslo agreement, Camp David talks and the recent Middle Eastern road map, as well as the latest developments on this stimulating interactive lecture course. Tutor: Noman Hanif.
    Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £87.00 Concession £55.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  15. A brief introduction to global history
    Course start date:  Wed 28 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Martin Jorgensen
    What is global history? How is it different from other ways of understanding history? This introductory course will give you a sense of what it means to study global history.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £71.00 Concession £45.00

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