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. 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
  2. Rising Powers: Brazil
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    Brazil's rise has been impressive but seems to have stalled. What are the factors the country’s growing presence and the challenges Latin America's leading power faces in its endeavour to achieve its international ambitions?



    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 £87.00 Concession £55.00
  3. Lampooning London: Satire in the City
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    Londoners have never taken themselves too seriously & delight in making fun of themselves. This course examines the cultural history of satire in the city from the 18thC to today, from Dr Johnson to Steve Bell & 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 £69.00 Concession £35.00
  4. 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
  5. The men who built London
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    London was shaped by its architects, engineers, bricklayers, navies etc. Our lecture and walks examine London’s buildings and the men (and women) who worked throughout history to create this eclectic and wonderful city.



    London guide: Eleanor Jackson



    First lecture will be delivered via zoom followed by 8 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £95.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  6. City of words: London's literary landscape
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    London has been muse, magnet and mecca to writers for 400 years, home to Shakespeare's successes, Dickens' dramas and Wilde's witticisms. After an introductory lecture we walk a different London neighbourhood each week exploring its literary connections. Initial lecture is on zoom . This is followed by 8 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £85.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  7. The rise and fall of Empires 1885-1940
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Alison Appleby
    In 1885, there were numerous empires, some solely in Europe, others spanning Asia and other parts of the world. Why did some of these empires collapse and others expand as a result of the Great War? N.B. no session on 27 October.
    Full fee £259.00 Senior fee £207.00 Concession £130.00
  8. Rising powers: China
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    The spectacular rise of China is one of the most significant developments of the last decades. What explains it and what does it mean for China itself and the world?



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £259.00 Senior fee £207.00 Concession £130.00
  9. Art in Britain 1950-2000 - 'This is Tomorrow' (Part 1)
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Chantal Condron
    Discover the work of selected British artists whose innovative practice shaped the development of modern art in Britain from the 1950s to the 1970s. Explore how and why the ideas and themes behind their work continue to be relevant to today’s audiences.



    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 £87.00 Concession £71.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  10. Focus on: Cornelia Parker
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Chantal Condron
    Discover the work of Cornelia Parker, one of the most engagingly inventive contemporary artists working in Britain today. Turner Prize nominee and Royal Academician, her multi-disciplinary practice embraces sculpture, installation, embroidery, photography and printmaking.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £45.00
  11. 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
  12. The Great (European) Powers and the Ottoman Empire: the Eastern Question, 1768-1914
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sebastien Ardouin
    The decline of the Ottoman Empire shaped the relations with and between the Great Powers, giving birth to new countries and spheres of influence, the legacy of which is still felt to this day.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £259.00 Senior fee £259.00 Concession £130.00
  13. 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
  14. A taste of creative writing
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 17 Sep 2022 (and 11 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Sophie McKenzie
    Give creative writing a try on this fun and supportive online short course. Ideal if you want to write but need help getting started. Guided exercises will encourage you to experiment and unlock your imagination.



    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 £35.00
    Rating:
    95% of 100
  15. Ways into screenwriting: a taster
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 17 Sep 2022 (and 4 other dates)

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

    Tutors:  Alan Nixon
    Want to write scripts but don't know how to start? Discover the basics of screenwriting - character, conflict and more - on this short online course that will help you shape your ideas and get your story going.



    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 £35.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100

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