Cat Call: Reclaiming the Feral Feminine (An Untamed History of the Cat Archetype in Myth and Magic)
“Just like a cat itself, Sollee has eyes that see the dark corners of civilization others miss. In Cat Call, Sollee uses the cat to claw open aspects of humanity others are too scared to investigate, from kink, to feminist politics, to viral feline stars that demonstrate the cat is still worshipped by humans from all walks of life. She flips the cat call on itself by dismantling patriarchal uses of the feline to discredit the intimidating power of the pussy while gifting us with a book that leaves you eager to embrace your personal cat power.” — Sophie Saint Thomas, sex writer, witch, and author of Finding Your Higher Self: Your Guide to Cannabis for Self-Care
“Cat Call is a fascinating exploration into the world of women and cats. Just when I thought I knew everything about the cat-woman relationship, this book proves I’ve merely scratched the surface.” — BriAnna Wills, author of Girls and Their Cats
“Cats have been revered as gods, adored as pets, and have been both celebrated and denigrated for their independent natures. If you’ve ever had trouble figuring out just why you’re so irresistibly drawn to the divine feline, you’ll be thrilled by this purrfect book. Prowling through myth, literature, science, philosophy, and pop culture, Cat Call is rollicking and scholarly, diligent and irreverent. From topics as apparently unrelated as Aristotle and pussy hats, she maintains a clear thread explaining why cats have been associated with femininity. This a fantastic gift for the cat lover in your life, especially if that cat lover is you.” – Jo Weldon, author of Fierce: The History of Leopard Print
“Cat Call will change the way you think about the cat forever. Filled to the brim with bewitching, inspiring, and cunning anecdotes on the powers of the feline, this book will leave you inspired to and reclaim your own feral femininity. Sollée skillfully and knowledgeably shares the mythology, history, and cultural significance of the cat while expanding of the mystical, spiritual, and sexual ties also wrapped up in its mystique. And she does this all in a way that will leave you inspired to embody this energy for yourself. Whether you have a feline familiar, are a sex kitten yourself, or are simply called to explore your untamed and wild nature, Cat Call offers wisdom and magick found nowhere else. This book is an ode to the witch and the kitty cat in all their shapeshifting glory and I cannot recommend it enough.” - Gabriela Herstik, author of Inner Witch: A Modern Guide to the Ancient Craft
“No one writes about the subjects of sexuality, desire, the shadow, and diabolism with such relish, and when I read her words I feel both smarter and less afraid of my own ‘tabooed’ feelings and thoughts. Like a cat, Kristen sees in the dark, as she guides us gracefully forward with her vision of unapologetic, feminine power.” — Pam Grossman, author of Waking the Witch: Reflections on Women, Magic, and Power
"Cat Call is the necessary text that links the feline, the feminine, and the magical. In many ways, it’s the cat lover’s modern epic poem, an ode to the many sacred archetypes we can all tap into — the feral, the fear-inducing, the autonomous. From Venice’s “kitten-carrying drag queens” to the necromancer cat of Japan, Sollée treats her readers to the delicious mythos of the cat, with meticulous research and gorgeous prose. For any cat lover or witch, this book is a feverish examination of the feline in our dreams and in our lives — and within ourselves. Page by page, you’ll tap into your most catty, feral, transgressive self — caught with the delicious story of the cat between your claws." - Lisa Marie Basile, author of Light Magic for Dark Times
“No one writes about the subjects of sexuality, desire, the shadow, and diabolism with such relish, and when I read her words I feel both smarter and less afraid of my own ‘tabooed’ feelings and thoughts. Like a cat, Kristen sees in the dark, as she guides us gracefully forward with her vision of unapologetic, feminine power.” —From the Foreword by Pam Grossman, author of Waking the Witch: Reflections on Women, Magic, and Power
The cat: A sensual shapeshifter. A hearth keeper, aloof, tail aloft, stalking vermin. A satanic accomplice. A beloved familiar. A social media darling. A euphemism for reproductive parts. An epithet for the weak. A knitted—and contested—hat on millions of marchers, fists in the air, pink pointed ears poking skyward. Cats and cat references are ubiquitous in art, pop culture, politics, and the occult, and throughout history, they have most often been coded female.
From the “crazy cat lady” unbowed by patriarchal prescriptions to the coveted sex kitten to the dreadful crone and her yowling compatriot, feminine feline archetypes reveal the ways in which women have been revered and reviled around the world—in Greek and Egyptian mythology, the European witch trials, Japanese folklore, and contemporary film.
By combining historical research, pop culture, art analyses, and original interviews, Cat Call explores the cat and its indivisible connection to femininity and teases out how this connection can help us better understand the relationship between myth, history, magic, womanhood in the digital age, and our beloved, clawed companions.
|Kristen J. Sollée is a writer, curator, and educator exploring the intersections of art, sex, and occulture. She is the founding editrix of Slutist, a sex positive feminist website, and lectures at The New School and across the US and Europe. Sollée’s signature college course, "The Legacy of the Witch" follows the witch through history, pop culture, and politics. Her critically-acclaimed book inspired by the course, Witches, Sluts, Feminists: Conjuring the Sex Positive, was published in 2017.|