Dawkins Memes

1435 Words6 Pages
The concept of "meme"--coined by Dawkins and referred to as genes-- means an idea, behavior, or trend that has the ability to spread from person to person within a culture. In today 's world, memes are mostly spread from person to person through the Internet. It can be spread through images, texts, videos, and more. Dawkins claims that "man is uniquely dominated by culture, by influences learned and handed down" (207) , which means that the things you are exposed to throughout your life is what influences you to pass it down to someone else. Dawkins main goal of a meme was to pass down a unit of cultural means that was able to be spread from person to person and to see it evolve. "Each individual has his own way of interpreting Dawkin 's…show more content…
To begin with, Dawkins coined the term "meme" when he published his book The Selfish Gene in 1976. In this book, he proposed this idea so that it was directed towards the Darwinian fundamentals, which referenced to genes. It was originated from the Greek word "mimeme", that was then transformed into "meme" which meant that any idea, behavior, or trend that had the ability to be transmitted from person to person. In his book, The Selfish Gene, Dawkins created this idea of memes when he focused on the evolution of genes to the evolution of ideas. He referred this idea to the replicators of DNA. He claims that "all life evolves by the differential survival of replicating entities" (Meme 192). This states that in order for life to change, there are different ways of reproducing and passing along entities to the next…show more content…
In today 's world, the way we explain what a meme is and how it is transferred from person to person is through videos, images, tunes, and much more. The most popular way of transferring memes in today 's world is through the Internet and through our daily lives. The meaning of meme hasn 't changed ever since Dawkins coined the term. The only difference, as said earlier, is the way memes are interpreted. Some interpretation can last a short period of time, while others last years. This is indicated on page 194 in the Meme handout and it states, "if it is a popular tune, its spread through the meme pool may be gauged by the number of people heard whistling in the streets. If it is a style of women 's shoe, the population memeticist may use sales statistics from shoe shops. Some memes,..achieve brilliant short-term success in spreading rapidly, but do not last long in the meme pool. Popular songs and stiletto heels are examples". If we consider looking at popular songs, the way I see this being a short term meme is that when a popular song is first released to the public, it is played many times all over the place. Eventually as time goes by, listening to that same song gets boring and slowly enough, that song will fade away. On the other hand, for a long term meme, an example of that can be laws that have been set for

More about Dawkins Memes

Open Document