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What would the neighbors say about you if they didn’t know your cat was listening?

What if it was “The Cat With No Name”? The one who claims “I have, as a cat, attained the highest pitch of evolution imaginable. … My tail is filled with all sorts of wisdom and, above all, a secret art handed down in the cat family, which teaches how to make fools of mankind. … I am a cat, it is true, but remember I am one who keeps in the house of a scholar who reads the Moral Discourses of Epictetus and bangs the precious tome upon the table. And I claim to be distinguished from my heavy, doltish relations at large.”

This volume is an English translation of Chapters III and IV of 吾輩は猫である Wagahai-wa neko de aru, which appeared in Japanese in 1902 and eventually ran to 10 installments. In these chapters we find the household of Professor Kushami entangled in the maneuvers of a possible engagement of Mr Kangetsu to Miss Kaneda and reacting with disdain toward businessmen and large noses and other unwelcome Western intrusions in Meiji Japan—all the while peppering their conversation with allusions to European science and literature.

doi: 10.32873/unl.dc.zea.1317



Publication Date



Zea Books


Lincoln, Nebraska


Cat, Japan, Soseki, Meiji


Arts and Humanities | Comparative Literature | East Asian Languages and Societies | Japanese Studies | Language Interpretation and Translation | Modern Literature


Published in 1909, this work is now in the public domain.

I Am a Cat, No. II