Part-time and Short Courses

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Application deadline: 8 December 2023

Black History Revisited

Black History Revisited is a short course designed primarily to help mature students progress to a degree in the History Department.

This course will provide you with historical knowledge and critical skills to understand contemporary debates around black history. You will explore the value of evidence, ways of interpreting evidence and the role of bias including when approaching historical sources. We will draw on a range of sources around history and memorialisation to unpack the multiple stories offered by widely differing sources. When thinking about historical sources we often refer to archives and documents or books written about a period. Art, literature, film, and music equally tell us much about our past and present. These may also be the only sources available that provide an alternative perspective to narratives written by those in power. This course will help you focus on what makes a historical source.

This course will be led by Dr Edson Burton, with guest lectures by academics at the forefront of research into the history of the transatlantic enslavement of Africans, the sociology of race and post-colonial discourses.

Further details:

This course runs across 12 Tuesday evenings, 6 pm to 8:45 pm, 23 January to 7 May 2024 with breaks for half-term and Easter.

The first half of the course will take place at St Paul's Learning Centre, and the second half of the course will continue at the University of Bristol Arts Complex on Woodland Road. 

The course will encourage you to develop skills in:

  • Reading a range of historical sources. We’ll be looking at lots of different types of sources which help shed light on Black History in Bristol and around the world from Black Tudors to the toppling of the Colston Statue. We’ll be thinking about how Black History has been presented in the media, in film, and in literature. We will explore a range of sources and artefacts in Bristol itself to unpack some of the stories narrated about the city today.
  • Discussion: There will be an emphasis on class discussion and debate as well as on critical analysis of the sources. This is a great way to improve confidence and to start thinking about what you are reading. This leads towards…
  • Essay writing: We’ll be focusing the opening weeks of the course on planning and writing essays: so don’t panic if you haven’t written one before or if you are out of practice!

How much does it cost?

The course fee is £270. Students on a low income or in receipt of benefits can apply for funding support to help with some of the costs. You can download our funding guidance document here: Pathway Funding Guidance (PDF, 69kB).

How do I apply?

Application deadline: 14 January 2024

Click here to fill out an online application form. 

If you require the form in an alternative format, please email us on

Excellent, informative, inspiring & intellectually stimulating. Edson has a wealth of knowledge & experience which he generously shared.

Black History: Revisited student, 2023

It was a fantastic course and I learnt so much. Edson was exceptional and offered insightful answers to our questions. The guest speakers gave further insight into their specialisms and had a wealth of knowledge.

Black History: Revisited student, 2023

I feel this course is a must for all residents of Bristol, whatever their heritage, as it gives insight into Bristol’s place in the transatlantic enslavement of Africans and the wealth that arrived as a result. The discussion of the construction of race and the focus of art and culture in the 20th century were also fascinating.

Black History: Revisited student, 2023
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