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/meem/ [By analogy with "gene"] Richard Dawkins's term for an idea considered as a replicator, especially with the connotation that memes parasitise people into propagating them much as viruses do.

Memes can be considered the unit of cultural evolution. Ideas can evolve in a way analogous to biological evolution. Some ideas survive better than others; ideas can mutate through, for example, misunderstandings; and two ideas can recombine to produce a new idea involving elements of each parent idea.

The term is used especially in the phrase "meme complex" denoting a group of mutually supporting memes that form an organised belief system, such as a religion. However, "meme" is often misused to mean "meme complex".

Use of the term connotes acceptance of the idea that in humans (and presumably other tool- and language-using sophonts) cultural evolution by selection of adaptive ideas has become more important than biological evolution by selection of hereditary traits. Hackers find this idea congenial for tolerably obvious reasons.

See also memetic algorithm.


(Pronounced "meem") A trend, belief, fashion or phrase that is passed from generation to generation through imitation and behavioral replication. Coined by Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book "The Selfish Gene," memes and memetics are the cultural counterpart to the biological study of genes and genetics. Using the evolution analogy, Dawkins observed that human cultures evolve via "contagious" communications in a manner similar to the gene pool of populations over time. See Internet meme.
References in periodicals archive ?
To maximize the potential of JINS MEME and to grow it as a wearable device that contributes to society, the "JINS MEME ACADEMIC AWARDS" are offered through "Leave a Nest" research program provided by Leave a Nest Co.
For example, in his narrative of the evolution of core religious beliefs from the time of the Abraham myth (circa 1900-1800 BCE) to the time of Jesus, James assigns the following meme names for a progression of religious beliefs and attitudes in the turbulent world of the Greeks, Romans, and Jews that produced Christianity: polytheism; tolerance; general purpose gods; monotheism; intolerance; abstract god; globalization; guilt; heaven and hell; proselytism; and Armageddon.
Hastaya yapilan meme dokusu ultrasonog-rafisinde apse gorunumu izlenmedi.
Trouble, who is a graduate of the Lebanese University and who also holds an MBA in marketing from the Nantes School of Management in France, is one of the co-founders of Lebanese Memes, along with two AUB graduates aged 29 and 27.
Eger sut cizgisi disindaysa ektopik meme olarak adlandirilir.
Thus, the recurrence of these thematic memes, that Obama is Muslim, an illegal alien, or a socialist, are tied to racial attitudes in which people who are perceived as different--even when they belong to the same culture--are regarded as outsiders.
Meme Drothea was dragged away from her small children, one of whom was still being breastfed, and imprisoned.
Al-Qaeda isolates its potential new members in order to expose them to a single meme set many times a day for months, or years, without contact from other memes.
Erkeklerde meme kanseri tum meme kanserlerinin %1 ini olusturur ve metastatik meme karsinomu erkeklerde daha da nadir gorulmektedir (7), (8).
McGrath is interested to know from Dennett whether he thinks atheism is also a meme or whether he reserves this term strictly for ideas that he does not like, such as God and religion.
Memes can be playful pieces of trivial slang, advertising slogans as indelible as they are annoying, or innovative expressions that usefully add to our common vocabulary.
And you can have a copy for free if you call Meme McKee at the Women's Care Cottage in North Hollywood.