King Arthur: the history and the legend

Ref: C2227518

This course provides a 'look through' of the various myths, legends and historical theories behind Britain's favourite king, his family and friends, trying and failing to distinguish serious history from enjoyable fiction. Since every single historian has had an agenda behind their writing, and many writers of "fiction" on the subject have been serious historians playing "what if?" with a theory that they don't quite have enough evidence to support, Arthur is a wonderful support for propaganda, and we will look at how this has been used. We will look at sources from Latin and Brythonic written at the time through the classic works of literature and fiction to films, and with a brief dive into archaeology. No prior knowledge of any of these things is required.

Additional information about this course

No skills or experience needed.

Course aim

A look through the various myths, legends and historical theories behind Britain's favourite king and his family and friends

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • You will need your own personal email address so that you’re able to login to the WEA’s digital learning platform: WEA Canvas. You will need to be able to understand how to follow URL links to pages on the internet. If you want to understand more about Canvas please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • You will need to be able to follow links to join our WEA live video learning platform: WEA Zoom. If you’d like to understand more about our video learning platform, Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline and http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • This course is for a group of around 15 students studying in a live video-learning platform conference and an online digital learning environment platform from the comfort of your own home.
  • This is a live lecture delivered by a subject specialist in an online webinar video learning platform. You will need to be able to access the internet on a device with speakers or earphones. There will be opportunities to take part in discussions and chats. If you’d like to know how to use Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • No skills or experience needed
  • The webcam is recommended but not essential - I can teach you without seeing your face. I would recommend a large screen rather than a phone.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Discuss the historical evidence for "King Arthur"
  • Develop an overview of the "classical" works of Arthurian fiction
  • Describe how the legend of Arthur has been used as a propaganda tool throughout the ages.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas will be used to provide resources or to support lessons, enable assessment, provide learner feedback and for other activities for individuals away from the course. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will be able to keep a record of your progress and achievement using photos, audio, text or documents uploaded into the WEA’s digital learning platform, WEA Canvas.
  • Your tutor will provide written, text and audio feedback recorded in WEA Canvas, WEA’s digital learning platform.
  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You may wish to read various books, both serious reference works and much lighter fiction, as the course progresses, but this is not a requirement.

What else do I need to know?

  • What you need: You will need an internet connection, speakers, a microphone and a webcam so that you can use our video learning platform, Zoom. If you’d like to understand more Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • You will also need access to the internet outside of your sessions. You could do this using a smart phone, tablet, laptop or a desktop computer (at home or through a library etc.).
  • You will need a personal email address to join the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas so that you can receive resources, record your progress and achievement and to work with others and share ideas. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Pupils with jobs in this area (tourist guide) have found the additional knowledge useful at work.

Download full course information sheet

King Arthur: the history and the legend

Enrolment Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2020
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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