What's in a Word | All Blogs


A squirrelly use of a word

By Debra Dobbins


I only had a vague notion of what a “meme” is, so I looked it up.

First, I tried I my trusty desktop Webster’s, and the word was not in there. (It may be time to invest in a more up-to-date version.)

Going online, I discovered the word is relatively new – it’s only been around since 1976. It was coined by a British biologist named Richard Dawkins “as a way to encourage readers to think about how Darwinian principles might be extended beyond the realm of genes,” according to Wikipedia.

Dawkins’ word is based on the Greek word mīmeîsthai, which meant to “imitate, copy,” according to the 2013 edition of the Random House Dictionary

Disappointingly for Dawkins, the word has taken on a much more general sense. In the context of the cartoon above, it means “a cultural item that is transmitted by repetition in a manner analogous to the biological transmission of genes,” according to Random House.

Apparently, the Internet is overrun with memes in their latter-day sense. We spread them by using tools such as Facebook, Twitter and e-mail.

A charming example is based on a squirrel that stole the show in a photo taken on a vacation in Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada. For more on that story and to see the photo, go to http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2009/08/13/camerahogging_squirrel_an_internet_sensation.html.
 

COMMENTS

Please Login or Register to leave a comment.




Recent Posts
TIME FOR A CHAT (A DOUBLE ENTENDRE FOR EARTH DAY)
By Nic.Korte
Sunday, April 23, 2017

WISDOM’S WISDOM OR HUMAN WISDOM?
By Nic.Korte
Friday, April 7, 2017

Tech Education a Must for Tech-Starved Mesa County
By David Goe
Friday, March 31, 2017

APRIL FOOLS’
By Nic.Korte
Friday, March 24, 2017

SHRIKE TWO!
By Nic.Korte
Thursday, March 9, 2017


TOP JOBS
  • Rn

    Find Your Life'sWork at HopeWestImmediate Openings forRegi...

  • Rn

    Love NURSING but dread the night/weekend shifts, on-callrequirement or lo...

  • Accounting Technician Iii

    The Colorado StateUniversity Agricultural Experiment Station is currently

  • City Of Grand Junction Opportunities

    Now hiring for the following positions:Certified & Lateral Police Off...

  • Full Time Teller/csr

    Full Time Teller/CSRposition with benefits including paid time...





THE DAILY SENTINEL
734 S. Seventh St.
Grand Junction, CO 81501
970-242-5050; M-F 8:00 - 5:00
Editions
Subscribe to print edition
E-edition
Advertisers
Advertiser Tearsheet
Information

© 2017 Grand Junction Media, Inc.
By using this site you agree to the Visitor Agreement and the Privacy Policy