Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

  • -id > 9:3
   

Meme

Hypothetical unit of cultural transmission; controversial term coined by Dawkins to serve as an analogy to a gene, the unit of genetic transmission. Theoretically, memes are reproduced from one generation to the next, are subject to natural selection and prone to mutation, can migrate and drift, and can experience extinction. Despite this analogy with evolutionary biology, many biologists believe that memes represent Lamarckian inheritance rather than examples of Darwinian evolution. Aka culturgen.

See adaptationist program.

Full-Text Search Entries