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The Nine Emotional Lives of Catsby Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson
Synopses & Reviews
In the hugely popular New York Times bestseller, Dogs Never Lie About Love, provocative psychoanalyst Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson brilliantly navigated the inner landscape of “man’s best friend.” Now he delves deep into the secretive, playful world of cats, revealing emotions, debunking myths, and honoring the feline’s evolution from solitary jungle creature to human companion.
Drawing from literature, history, animal behavioral research, and the wonderful true stories of cat experts and cat lovers around the world, Jeffrey Masson vividly explores the delights and mysteries of the feline heart. But at the core of this remarkable book are Masson’s candid, often amusing observations of his own five cats. Their mischievousness, aloofness, and affection provide a way to examine emotions from contentment to jealousy, from anger to love.
Consider the question: Are cats selfish? While human egocentricity is defined by how little a person cares about others, the cat’s narcissism is not like that at all. Cats may appear self-centered, but they watch us all the time, taking us in. They see us; they notice us–a far cry from vanity.
Cats are curious, a trait that rarely kills them. On the contrary, it gives them the chance to assess, in their own idiosyncratic way, whether we are worthy of their attention. Cats are happy to be themselves. What they think of us is a different question entirely. “We need cats to need us,” notes Masson, “It unnerves us that they do not. However, if they do not need us, they nonetheless seem to love us.”
The Nine Emotional Lives of Cats will captivate readers with its surprises and insights, offering a new perspective on the deep connection shared by humans and their feline friends. This is the book that Masson’s many fans and cat lovers everywhere have been waiting for.
From the Hardcover edition.
"Masson's credentials are impeccable, since he's examined animals in all shapes and sizes....Worth reading and reading again, accompanied by a purring lap cat." Barbara Jacobs, Booklist
"Although [Masson's] argument that dogs and cats should be left to wander the streets and fields at will is a very controversial one, it will not deter people from reading, enjoying, and learning from this book. This should be very popular with cat lovers everywhere, especially those who want something more than a personal account but less than a behavioral treatise. Highly recommended." Library Journal
"An affectionate, completely engaging book full of new insights into the emotional lives of cats. Of course, all cats are interesting, but Masson?s five felines seem particularly so — and you don?t need to be a cat lover to enjoy them via these pages." Elizabeth Marshall Thomas
"A wonderfully thoughtful — and thought-provoking — book about the feline mind." Desmond Morris
The best-selling author of When Elephants Weep journeys into the mysteries of the feline mind, drawing on personal observations of his own five cats to illuminate the diverse ways in which cats reveal their emotions, and examines the fascinating evolution of the cat from solitary jungle predator to human companion.
About the Author
Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, former Sanskrit scholar and Projects Director of the Sigmund Freud Archives, has written more than a dozen books, including the New York Times bestsellers Dogs Never Lie About Love and When Elephants Weep. A longtime resident of Berkeley, California, he now lives in New Zealand with his wife, two sons, and five cats.
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