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. Machiavelli's 'The Prince': an introduction
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 30 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    One of the most poignant ideas that emerged from the Italian Renaissance was the centrality of mankind. This new society, in which man could shape his own destiny, led to a new type of ruler, which is perfectly described in Machiavelli's work.



    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
  2. The meaning of light: symbolism and religious objects in world faiths
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 30 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    World religions and the objects associated with light, from different faiths and festivals.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £12.00
  3. Creating your author platform online
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 31 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Increasingly publishers are looking for an author with an impressive online presence, as well as a sparkling manuscript. On this practical and interactive course, you'll learn how to start and grow your author brand, gain a following and build a readership for your future titles.



    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. Masters of cinema: "The movie brats"
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 31 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    A restless generation took Hollywood by storm in the 1970s, reflecting the climate of the country. The freewheeling styles of Coppola, Scorsese, Spielberg, De Palma and Lucas would have a lasting impact on American filmmaking. These ‘movie brats’ were the first directors to come straight from college. Join us to investigate the 'New Hollywood'.



    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
  5. Victorian fiction 1840 -1880: the rise of Realism
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 6 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The course will consider the Victorian novel over a period of 40 years from the perspective of realism and its importance in the development of the novel’s form, style and significance.



    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
  6. Cryptocurrencies: fad or revolution?
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 6 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Cryptocurrencies moved from the fringes to the financial mainstream. Yet, questions about their utility and long-term viability are far from settled. This course equips participants with tools to forge their own informed opinions.



    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 £35.00
  7. Craft focus: character in fiction
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    In fiction, character and plot are inseparable. Without characters in stories there can be no action, and without characters acting there can be no plot. In this short course you'll learn how to create characters that can drive a narrative forward and deepen its themes.



    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:
    95% of 100
  8. Published poets group
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Share your work, develop your poetry and receive feedback from your peers and tutor in this inspiring workshop for published poets.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £8.00
  9. How to get an agent
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This intensive workshop offers students insider, need-to-know information on securing a literary agent.



    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. 'The Sanction of Eternal Truth': exploring the poetry of Keats's Eighteenth-Century Forebears
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 13 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Too often it is assumed that the Romantic poets engineered a complete break with their eighteenth-century predecessors. By exploring the work of five of Keats’s gifted forebears, this course will allow us to engage in a fundamental and detailed reconsideration of that assumption.



    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
  11. How to build a career around your writing
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 14 Nov 2021 (and 1 other date)

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

    Want to write but also build a sustainable career? This short course will help you know where to look for opportunities.



    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. Craft focus: voice in fiction
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 20 Nov 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    All fiction must have a 'voice,' a complex mix of elements that, together, give the piece its unique identity. Learn what 'voice' really means in fiction and how to develop a voice for your story that can capture the attention of readers.



    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 £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £28.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  13. Londinium (Roman London 47-457 CE)
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 20 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    A look at the spectacular rise and fall of Londinium from c. AD 47 to its abandonment in c. AD 457.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £29.00 Senior fee £23.00 Concession £15.00
  14. Writing the family
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 20 Nov 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    A thought-provoking workshop designed to tackle the challenges of writing about family life and offer guidance on shaping personal stories into coherent, engaging narratives.



    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:
    100% of 100
  15. Masters of Cinema: Douglas Sirk and subversive melodrama
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 20 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This online film studies course will explore the work of the Hollywood director Douglas Sirk, most famous for his 1950s Hollywood melodramas Magnificent Obsession (1954), All that Heaven Allows (1955), Written on the Wind (1956) and Imitation of Life (1959). The course will consider the films of this intensely productive period in some detail but it will also explore the film melodrama more broadly, considering its history, development and its critical significance. The course will consider Sirk’s status as a master filmmaker by exploring his entire career and it will examine the lasting influence and legacy of his films.



    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

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