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About

The world’s first ever English novel – a little known satire of magic and religious controversy written during a time of immense political and social change across England and Europe – has been brought to life by researchers at the Universities of Sussex, Sheffield, and Sheffield Hallam.

The novel, Beware the Cat, was written in 1552 before many of the more well-known early modern writers published their first work. It tells a tale of witchcraft, religious controversy, and talking cats in a bid to help us imagine what animals might say about the world if they had the ability to talk.

Centred on the grisly alchemical experiments of a rambling priest seeking to understand the language of cats, the story asks a question that has provoked humans across the ages: do birds and beasts have reason?

Professor Frances Babbage from the University of Sheffield’s School of English and Dr Rachel Stenner from the School of English at the University of Sussex have worked with Terry O’Connor from UK theatre ensemble Forced Entertainment and Penny McCarthy from Sheffield Hallam’s Fine Art department to adapt the novel into a theatre performance for audiences across the UK.

They were joined in this piece of collaborative research by Dr Bob McKay, Dr Bill McDonnell, Dr Robyn Orfitelli and Professor Adam Piette

Supported by:

University of Sheffield, Festival of the Mind

Society for Renaissance Studies

University of Sussex, Higher Education Innovation Fund


Image by Penny McCarthy © Penny McCarthy

General Information

Access

The following access tickets can be booked online: spaces for wheelchair users, seats with flat floor access, best seats for sightlines of captions / BSL interpretation (when applicable). For guidance about online booking and for further information about accessibility at the venue see our Access page here.

If you have access requirements that you would like to discuss with us or would like to book a ticket for a Personal Assistant please contact the box office on 01273 678 822 or email boxoffice@attenboroughcentre.com.

Box Office Opening Times

The box office (phone line and drop-in service) is open from 10am to 4pm, Mondays to Fridays. The box office is also open one hour before the advertised show start time.

Dates & Times

  • Friday 10 May, 2019
    7:00pm – 8:15pm

Tickets

  • FREE but ticketed. Please use Book Now tab below to book your ticket.
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University of Sussex School of English presents: Beware the Cat
Friday 10 May
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University of Sussex School of English presents: Beware the Cat Tickets

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