Cats of Cairo


Book Details

Author  Lorraine Chittock
Publisher  Abbeville Press
Publication Date   March 1, 2001
ISBN  0789207079
Pages  94

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Far from being pampered house cats, these feisty creatures roam freely through the streets of Cairo. They were so beloved in ancient days that they were portrayed in statues and, upon the death of a cat, a lavish funeral was held. According to folk tradition, the prophet Muhammad cut off his coat sleeve because he had to stand up for prayer and did not want to disturb his cat who was napping on his sleeve. Today, as the photographs display, the mystique of the cat lives on. During her seven-year stay in Cairo, Lorraine Chittock pursued cats throughout the city, taking intimate portraits of these wary inhabitants. She portrays their lunar eyes coolly scanning the relentless bustle around them and their long bodies slinking through souks and down alleys. The intriguing images and the fascinating introduction and quotes paired with them trace the timeless bond between people and cats in Cairo revealing the rhythm of life there, its joys, sorrows, and deep sense of religion. This is the quintessential cat book, featuring the quintessential cat.

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