Synopses & Reviews
According to ancient Egyptian lore, the goddess Bast, who protected her worshippers from disease and hard luck, had the figure of a woman and the head of a cat. Egyptians loved their feline companions, including them in family portraits, mummifying them alongside their owners, and creating exquisite works of sculpture around their graceful forms.
Four thousand years later, the cat continues to charm us. Katharine M. Rogers traces our relationship with this curious creature in Cat, an entertaining look at one of the most popular pets in the world. From the domestic cats emergence in ancient Egypt to its enormous popularity in the contemporary United States, Rogers uncovers the felines cultural history in all its numerous forms: rat-catcher, witchs familiar, and even the inscrutable creature that inspired Lewis Carroll and Edgar Allan Poe. As Rogers demonstrates, our fascination with cats lies in their uncanny ability to embody just about any character—from sweet to ferocious, affectionate to independent, eerie to elegant.
Cat will be relished by anyone who appreciates these lovable companions and their amazing ability to bring joy to our lives.
"The fascination of cats, she says, lies in the diverse images they project: ferocious, independent, domestic, eerie, elegant, affectionate."—Church Times Church Times
"Cat unites a typically broad and fascinating set of images with Katharine Rogers' elegant survey of the way humans have seen and thought of home-based felines. . . . Incisive and erudite." The Independent
"Beautifully illustrated history. . . . A perfect read for ailurophiles."
About the Author
Katharine M. Rogers is the author and editor of numerous books and anthologies, including The Cat and the Human Imagination: Feline Images from Bast to Garfield, L. Frank Baum: Creator of Oz, and the forthcoming First Friend: A History of Dogs and Humans.
Table of Contents
1. Wildcat to Domestic Mousecatcher2. The Magic of Cats, Evil and Good3. Cherished Inmates of Home and Salon4. Cats and Women5. Cats Appreciated as Individuals6. The Fascination Paradox TimelineReferencesBibliographyAssociations and WebsitesAcknowledgementsPhoto AcknowledgementsIndex