cultural phenomenon memes

The term memes has been around since the 1960s when Richard Dawkins used it for the first time in his 1976 book The Selfish Gene. It stood for a cultural notion that could travel from one mind to another like genes are passed on in a family. The current use of the word meme has strayed from its original state but it has still retained the same essence that the first definition of memes had. How? By being based on the same principle that an idea has to be passed on among a group of people. In the present context, memes can be defined as images and videos often accompanied with a little text to convey an idea or an opinion or belief or emotion to anyone who comes across it. Humour is often the most important focus of a meme but now it has extended to capturing not just the funny elements but also any widely felt emotion like anger, grief and it is even used to criticise people nowadays.

The meme revolution

Memes made our way into daily lives through the internet. They went viral and meme pages popped up on social media websites. People started sharing them, tagging friends in them and even making them to suit their own life events. Many people started saving memes to share when the appropriate time arises. Through social media, into our image galleries and straight into our daily lives, memes have made quite the journey in the past few years. But what is it about these funny images and videos that has people across the globe hooked? Read on to find out.

Why do memes have a global appeal?

Memes capture emotions, ideas and beliefs in simple images and sometimes without even the help of texts. So, if a meme has a universal appeal then one glance at it will elicit the same reaction from two people from different corners of the world. If memes are culturally exclusive then they can be altered to be relevant to other cultures as well just by changing the text slightly. Images are almost always universal so only the little text that may be there in a meme allows for changes so all cultures can understand it. This is one reason for their popularity.

Memes can literally convey something in one glance. The short attention span of human beings in this age contributes to their popularity because they can convey how they feel about something through just an image or video and a little text.

They have been elevated to the status of an art but it is an art that does not require too many expenses. All you need is internet connectivity and you are free to make and share as many memes as you like. Meme sharing websites are a dime a dozen on the internet today but the most popular social media websites are the ones which have a wide range of memes and are constantly updated like and more. They bring together a global community of users who make and share memes. You will find some of the most funny videos and images here and you can share them with your friends and family to spread the joy around.

To Conclude

Memes have become a means of communication of their own and they can capture the essence of anything from personal incidents to the happenings of the political spectrum. A meme for every occasion has become the mantra for this generation of internet users and it seems that meme phenomenon is here to stay.

Leave a Reply