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Literature: I Am a Cat
"I am a cat. As yet I have no name"

Written by Sōseki Natsume (the pen-name of Natsume Kin'nosuke), I Am a Cat first appeared in ten instalments in the literary magazine Hototogisu (Cuckoo) between 1905 and 1906. Soseki had not intended to write more than a short story but it was so popular that he expanded it to fill a whole book. It is the chronicle of an unloved, unwanted, wandering cat who spends all his time observing humans, from his schoolteacher master, his servant, his horrible children, and more.


  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: One of the first things the cat tells us of was how a Shosei (student) catches, boils and eats cats. It doesn't get much better from there when he tries to sneak into the school-teacher's house and repeatedly gets thrown out by the maid. The children spend a lot of their time torturing the poor thing.
  • Shout-Out: In the original Japanese dub of Azumanga Daioh, the bombastic (as is typical with Norio Wakamoto) way Chiyo's father identifies himself to Osaka during her dream sequence is a direct invocation of the book's title ("Wagahai wa neko de aru.")
    • The Strain Neko from K also introduces herself as "Wagahai wa neko de aru" and the series is her reason to live as a cat.

HyoukaJapanese LiteratureKafka on the Shore

alternative title(s): I Am A Cat; Wagahai Wa Neko De Aru; Wagahai Wa Neko De Aru
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