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. An introduction to Indian comparative religions
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Aug 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Ketan Varia
    The course is an introduction to Indian Religions. Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism all have common aspects, but also some fundamental differences in philosophy.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £30.00
  2. Plotinus and The One
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Aug 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  John Goff
    “THE ONE is all things and no one of them; the source of all things is not all things; all things are its possession … ” Plotinus.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £30.00
  3. Writing the city
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 21 Aug 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Rowan Hisayo Buchanan
    Through a combination of close observation and texts both old and new, you'll explore the depiction of inner city life in fiction, and write your own fiction inspired by the urban landscape in this short course.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £28.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  4. Taster: Meet the Victorians
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 5 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter
    Join us for a taster session in which we will explore the complex, enquiring and sometimes contradictory world of the Victorians, whose science, engineering, and development of industrial innovations changed the landscapes of Britain and the lives of its people.



    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
  5. Creative non-fiction: a taster
    Evening
    Course start date:  Wed 7 Sep 2022 (and 2 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Julie Garton
    Have you had experiences that will move, delight or entertain readers? This taster session in creative-non fiction explores approaches to capturing your most poignant moments and crafting them into inspiring pieces of literature.



    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
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  6. Taster: The Tudor kings and queens
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 8 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Ellen Carpenter




    Television dramas, novels, plays, films…What exactly is it about the Tudor dynasty that captures our historical imagination? Join us for this taster session to explore the social, political and religious lives of this iconic royal family.



    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
  7. Art history taster
    Course start date:  Mon 12 Sep 2022 (and 15 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Curious about art history? Join us for this taster session where we explore different ways into visual art and its histories, from the ancient to the contemporary.



    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
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  8. Playwriting: a taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Grant Corr
    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
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  9. Politics taster: Presidents and Prime Ministers - what makes great leaders in times of crisis
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Martin Jorgensen, Mark Malcomson
    Crises are a fairly common feature of political life. Great leadership is less common. In this short taster session Mark Malcomson, Principal of City Lit, will discuss political leaders from both sides of the Atlantic: what makes a great leader? What doesn't? This session will also give students the opportunity to discuss our programme on Politics and current affairs, Economics, global history, Asian history, African history and the history of the Americas with Martin Jorgensen- coordinator for these areas.
    Full fee £15.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £15.00
  10. History taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Martin Jorgensen
    What is history? What does history mean to you? Is history important to society? Why or why not? Who gets to decide what and whose history is important? What are the implications of this? There are many reasons and ways to engage with history. With this course, we scratch the surface of the vast universe that is history to give you a taster.



    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
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  11. Lunchtime lecture: Peggy Guggenheim's Venice
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Join us for an introduction to one of the 20th century’s most important art collectors and why she chose Venice as the permanent home for her art collection. This is the inaugural course of City Lit Art History's 'Venice Season'.



    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 £8.00 Concession £7.00
  12. A taste of American history
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Dafydd Townley
    Join this session for a taste of what our American history courses are like!



    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 £5.00
  13. Literature Taster: Jane Austen
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sophie Oxenham
    Ever wondered what studying an online Literature course at City Lit is like? Tempted to try, but not ready to commit to a whole course? Try this taster session on Jane Austen to boost your confidence and whet your appetite for further study!



    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
  14. Film Studies Taster
    Evening
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022 (and 5 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  John Wischmeyer
    Learn how to evaluate and discuss films while enjoying a working example of a City Lit film studies class.



    We will view clips from a wide variety of films, exploring themes and technique in British cinema and modern American cinema. There will be a chance to review term one film courses at City Lit (September - December 2022).
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
  15. Literature taster
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 17 Sep 2022 (and 3 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Patricia Sweeney
    Do you want to find out how to go about understanding a poem or how to do a close reading of a work of fiction? Come and join us to discover what makes a literature class at City Lit so special.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100

Items 1-15 of 196

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