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.

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  1. American political institutions
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 21 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This four-week interactive lecture-based course examines the US political system from its inception to today – reviewing its structure and constituent parts.



    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
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  2. Picture book writing
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 5 Oct 2021 (and 6 other dates)

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

    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. 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:
    99% of 100
  3. Developing your fairytale
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 29 Oct 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Already devised a cunning plan for your own fairytale? This fun workshop coaches students on how to add an extra dash of magic into the cauldron while writing in the fairytale genre.



    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 £28.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  4. Treasures of Byzantine art and architecture
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 11 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The Byzantines (circa 330-1453) have produced some of the finest works of art and erected the most remarkable buildings in the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea and beyond.



    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 £55.00 Concession £42.00
  5. Buddhist philosophy in a nutshell
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 15 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    As an ‘atheistic’ religion, Buddhism offers a way beyond the natural unsatisfactoriness of human life not by abandoning living in this world but rather by giving it a new ‘enlightened’ meaning.



    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 £42.00
  6. Being and beauty: the philosophy of Japanese aesthetics
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Not something apart from everyday life but intrinsic to it, beauty in Japanese thought does not entail perfection but the surprise of imperfect and transient being.



    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
  7. Borderlines of Madness in 19th century fiction
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 17 Jan 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    The late 19th/early 20th century was a tumultuous time in London, and many fiction writers sought a new way to explore the themes of poverty, social injustice, gender and ethnicity in the capital. We will explore each author’s approach to the subject matter, and travel in fiction to many vividly realised London locations, ranging from Lambeth to Soho, Whitechapel to Seven Dials, Shoreditch to Shadwell, identifying innovations in narrative style and literary genre.



    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
  8. Indian philosophy in a nutshell
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 7 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    From mysticism to materialism, Indian philosophy is as diverse as its European counterpart, covering a wide range of thought about the nature of reality and with a distinctive concern for human spiritual liberation.



    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
  9. Life writing: a taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 25 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    This inspiring workshop encourages students to explore a range of techniques and prompts in order to create vivid and engaging life writing.



    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 £28.00
  10. Writing and rewriting fairytales
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 5 Oct 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Once upon a time there was a City Lit day workshop all about writing fairytales. The quest: to inspire writers to pen stories of love, fear, forests, revenge, dragons, witches, kings, queens, frogs and magic.



    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 £28.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  11. Chinese Buddhist philosophy in a nutshell
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 7 Mar 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    "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

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