Kari Altmann / Extra Extra

Most web savvy folk recognize the term “meme” as referring to ideas, games and styles reproduced swiftly by means of imitation and adaption across the Internet. Artist Rob Pruitt has traced an absurd example of such a movement in Kitlers (2010), mapping the online communities dedicated to photographing white cats with black “Hitler” moustaches. However, as a concept invented by evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins (The Selfish Gene, 1976), the meme has much broader cultural application. It indicates any idea, activity or trend that proliferates from one person to another within a given society, thought to mutate, and evolve, through natural selection.

Read more at Whitehot Magazine, published September 2011.