PhilanthroMeme (n): philanthropic ideas replicating, evolving, and adapting between cultures.


  • Private initiatives for the public good.


  • An idea that, like a gene, can replicate and evolve.
  • A unit of cultural information that represents a basic idea that can be transferred from one individual to another, and subjected to mutation, crossover and adaptation.
  • A cultural unit (an idea or value or pattern of behavior) that is passed from one generation to another by nongenetic means (as by imitation); “memes are the cultural counterpart of genes”.
  • Coined by Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene (1976)

2 responses to “Definitions

  1. Dearest Heather – aside from your amazing ingenuity, thinking, stretching our minds to see things in different contexts and questioning our prethora of assumptions (often poor), I have learned “gobs” from this blog – your writing and the way in which you challenge the reader without alienation is inspired and effective. How did I get so lucky to be your “Awnt”???!!!!! I read the whole blog with fascination. Planning to run a country? Trust me you could do better than the lot we currently have running most. Love you

  2. Thanks for your comment “Awnt” Pam. Given your many years of deep engagement in philanthropic endeavors of all sorts — from the Boston Ballet to the Max Warburg Courage Curriculum for young students — I’m humbled that my blurbs and “gobs” have given you something new to think about. What can I say — I’ve been lucky to have some great mentors in you and Uncle John.

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