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MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL WHO’S THE MOST POPULAR OF THEM ALL?
An investigation on the popularity of cat breeds from a psychological and philosophical perspective.
Peter Paul Moormann

This article is dealing with the popularity of cat breeds. Some breeds are very common at cat exhibitions. Others are seldom seen. Still others you only happen to see in particular areas or countries. First of all the popularity of breeds will be assessed. Then an explanation will be brought forward for their popularity. Furthermore it is interesting to explore why some breeds are more popular in Eastern than in Western European countries and vice versa.
Introduction
After having judged in many different countries the local differences in popularity of breeds is striking. Local heroes are for instance Chartreux, Ural Rex, British, German Rex, and Ukrainian Levkoy. Despite these differences some breeds are definitely en vogue and dominate the show bench, while others remain wall-flowers, such as Tonkinese, German Rex and Havana Brown. Persians have been extremely popular for decades. However the semi-longhairs gained ground and the same holds for the British SH. The Sphinxes and Rexes cannot be denied either. They are the eccentricities of our shows. Another remarkable breed is Scottish Fold, extremely popular in Eastern Europe and the USA. However, other unusual cats such as American Curls, Bobtails and Munchkins sense their chances and are marching on rapidly.
The measurement of a breed’s popularity
Coming into fashion is an interesting phenomenon. Why are some breeds so popular while others fail to break through? Many explanations can be brought forward for a breed’s popularity:
Historical (old famous breeds) Psychological (taste, personal likes and dislikes, etc.) Philosophical (Zeitgeist) Cultural and social (breeds express underlying cultural forces and social ideas) Commercial (status, some breeds are commercially more interesting than others).
Continuation in Yearbook RUI-2008
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