You Can Now Get a Ph.D. Writing a Dissertation on Memes!

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Finding the right topic for a dissertation usually takes a while, only if you aren’t writing a dissertation on memes!

That’s right! Memes (or memetics), in a very broad sense, are culturally transmitted information that can be easily spread on social media.

In 2017, Julian Porch, the University of York graduate, got the highest grade for his mind-blowing dissertation on memes.

Looks like his success is keeping one girl awake at night! Adriana Torres Plaza from Durham, Washington D.C. is currently working on a dissertation dedicated to the very same topic!

The third-year student is studying Combined Honors in Geography and International relations. Unlike her peer Julian, who presented an 8.000-word paper, Adriana intends to present a more fundamental work of 10.000 words.

Memes as the Subject of Study

For most of the memes are just silly pictures with nonsensical captions. Wanna know Ms. Plasa’s dissertation topic? “Memes as an expression of Neoliberalism; naturalizers of individualism and competition or vehicles for a new collective life.” Sounds a bit complicated, right?

In reality, memes have long become a social phenomenon which allows a fast and prolific exchange of information. The Durham student sees “memes as a new and notable form of expression, political mobilization, and social critique.”  

Adriana’s favorite meme is Kermit the Frog. Ms. Plaza grew to like it for the shadiness of the frog that is so good at conveying how people feel. Still, wholesome and niche memes are another source of study.

Unlike Ms. Plaza, Julian Porch has taken a particular liking to post-ironic memes.

These memes often look like absurd images supplied with no less absurd captions. Some of them are even deliberately misspelled. And yet, people online find them extremely funny!

Memes and Politics – Any Relation?  

Adriana and Julian both believe that memes relate to politics more than anything else these days. Both of them agree that memes serve as a way of engaging young people in politics and world events.

While conducting interviews for her dissertation, Ms. Plaza asks participants to point out two memes that perfectly describe how they feel about their life and future.

Very often, respondents bring the memes that reflect their multi-level reality. Emotions, behaviors, and ideas – all of it hidden behind one’s personal perception of a meme.  

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You Can Now Get a Ph.D. Writing a Dissertation on Memes!
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You Can Now Get a Ph.D. Writing a Dissertation on Memes!
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Finding the right topic for a dissertation usually takes a while, only if you aren’t writing a dissertation on memes!
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