The Mystery of Cats and Women

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taylor swift crazy cat lady
Taylor Swift is a Crazy Cat Lady in 1989 Diet Coke ad campaign (photo: www.cambio.com)

Dating back to the ancient civilizations of Egypt and Greece, there is a seemingly natural association between felines and femininity. There have been several recent articles about the phenomenon of the “cat lady,” which is actually supported in recent data collection by Neilsen Scarsborough, that recently came out, Seattle and Portland have more than their fair share of cat ladies, but it is not isolated.  As it turns out, the stereotypical image is anything but what the reality is today and, for that matter, centuries ago.  The women that reportedly lived “alone,” with their cats were primarily working women with full social and activity-based lives.  That probably could be said of Nefertiti, too.

Nefertiti by Glennfox
Nefertiti by Glennfox

Author Clea Simon in her book, The Feline Mystique: On the Mysterious Connection Between Women and Cats, explores this subject.  She equates having a dog as more like having a child, but that a cat is more akin to living with someone from another culture.

sphynx cats
photo: webecoist.momtastic.com

Simon examines the bond between cats and women and how it influences other parts of their lives.  Using an informational foundation that includes history, science, literature, and art, she looks at the modern woman with a focus in explaining and exploring this unique relationship. While her book may not have all the answers to this mysterious connection, it may offer some insight into the how’s and why’s of the proverbial “cat lady.”

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