The nickname for an older woman who has a relationship with a younger man. Whether it's dating a bunch of younger guys or marrying a younger man, the term cougar refers specifically to a sexy, independent woman and the cougar movement is considered a phenomenon of women's liberation. In general, the term is used with a negative stigma, but many people feel such women are inspiring.
Cougars are not considered the opposite of a trophy bride (see kitten), instead they like to pursue physical relationships with emotionally mature, intellectually stimulating, confident young men while they are at their sexual peak. In addition to Anne Bancroft as Mrs. Robinson, real-life celebrity cougars include: Barbra Streisand, Cher, Madonna, Demi Moore, Susan Sarandon, Katie Couric, Ellen Barkin, Jullian Moore, Geena Davis, Barbara Hershey, Lorraine Braco, Mira Sorvino, Bridget Monyhan, Cameron Diaz, Sandra Bullock,
Sheryl Crow, Courtney Cox, Naomi Watts, Sadie Frost, Janet Jackson, Paula Abdul, Kim Catrell. A so-called "strain of cougardom" is the "classic cougar" which is a much older woman with younger men. Celebrity examples of classic cougars include Linda Evans, Carol Burnett and Joan Collins.