History, culture & writing

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 writing creative non-fiction and American history and politics.

Study 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, 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 online now.

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  1. Writing villanelles
    Evening
    Course Date:  Wed 16 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Do not go gentle into that good night; write villanelles that rage, rage against the dying light. This interactive day workshop teaches students about the origins of the form popularized by Dylan Thomas, Emily Bishop and Sylvia Plath, and explores methods of manipulating the villanelle in new, subversive ways.

    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
  2. Further village London
    Course Date:  Wed 16 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online



    A further five walks around London's former villages - Hampstead, Highgate, Archway, Fitzrovia and Soho.

    Why did these areas grow up as villages and how did they become swallowed up by the city of London?

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £26.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  3. Shakespeare's Women: Rosalind, Ophelia & Lady Macbeth
    Course Date:  Thu 17 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This online Literature course will look at three of Shakespeare’s female characters: Rosalind (As You Like It), Ophelia (Hamlet) and Lady Macbeth (Macbeth). We will consider their wit, madness and ambition, exploring Shakespeare’s language, the historical context, and the plays in performance.

    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
  4. Theme focus: writing sex, love, and sexuality
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 19 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    “Love doesn’t just sit there, like a stone; it has to be made, like bread; remade all the time, made

    anew." -Ursula Le K. Guin. Learn how to write compelling representations of all kinds of love, sex, and sexuality on this supportive course designed to support those writing in any creative form.

    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
  5. Plot your children's novel in two days
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 19 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    You’re a writer with some experience and a great idea for a children’s novel. Spend two days in this interactive workshop, learning about structure and developing your idea into a compelling plot.

    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:
    100% of 100
  6. Performance poetry
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 19 Jun 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Write poetry and perform it, finding your own style and delivery under the guidance of a spoken word artist. Explore the differences between performance and other forms of poetry.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £59.00 Concession £24.00
    Rating:
    80% of 100
  7. Writing the queer play
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 19 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the queer play on this short course for playwrights. In the workshop you will be given opportunities to construct your own queer characters giving you the tools and confidence to write the stories that you want to tell.

    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
  8. Classics Week: Power - lessons from ancient Rome
    Evening
    Course Date:  Mon 21 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Join us for a series of talks exploring the subject of power in ancient Rome. This series takes inspiration from the British Museum’s current exhibition Nero: the man behind the myth (27 May- 24 Oct).

    Our esteemed guest speakers including Mary Beard, Olivette Otele, Tom Holland and Ian Morris will explore Roman soft-power, dynasties, race, identity and more. Presented by the City Lit and British Museum in partnership with UCL.

    .

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £45.00 Concession £45.00
  9. Tabloid newspaper tales
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 26 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Enter the world of tabloid journalism by getting to grips with the techniques of a professional hack. Learn to think like a journalist, writing your own articles and discovering what makes the biggest front-page stories.

    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. Write a short story in a weekend
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 26 Jun 2021 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Turn your great idea into a short story on this fun practical course. Through a series of inspiring exercises, you'll be introduced to some key fiction writing techniques and encouraged to draft a short story from beginning to end in two days. Suitable for beginners who are comfortable learning at a fast pace. Please note - this course includes a 2-hour break from 12:30-14:30 each day.

    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
  11. Writing non-fiction for children: a taster
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 26 Jun 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    On this interactive taster course, you will explore children’s non-fiction writing; an exciting and wide-ranging field, encompassing biography, narrative non-fiction and the classic fact book.

    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
  12. Masters of cinema: the Coen Brothers
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 26 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The Coen brothers reflect reality through Hollywood genres: the film noir of Blood Simple, screwball comedy in Raising Arizona, the westerns True Grit or Buster Scruggs, and Hollywood musicals as celebrated in Hail, Caesar! Expect the unexpected—the Coens always add something exhilarating to the Hollywood genres they lovingly pastiche so you’ll never look at them the same way again!

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £36.00
  13. 'I caught this morning morning's minion': the passions of Gerard Manley Hopkins
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 26 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    We will explore why Hopkins wrote highly original poems of great power and beauty, but didn’t attempt to have them published in his lifetime. We will look at how this relates to his conversion to Roman Catholicism and, in turn, how this may have related to fears about his sexuality.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £36.00
  14. Self-publishing: a taster
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 26 Jun 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Want to publish your own novel, poetry / short story collection, memoir or non-fiction book? Self-publishing allows you to keep full creative control of your project. But how do you give your book the best chance of achieving high sales and what does a writer need to consider when taking the giant leap of publishing their own book? This course offers students introductory information on the world of self-publishing.

    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
  15. Writing eco-poetry: a taster
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 13 Nov 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    How might poets write about the natural world in 2021 and beyond and what is an eco-poem?

    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

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