Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The imitation or representation of aspects of the sensible world, especially human actions, in literature and art.
  • n. Biology Mimicry.
  • n. Medicine The appearance, often caused by hysteria, of symptoms of a disease not actually present.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The representation of aspects of the real world, especially human actions, in literature and art.
  • n. mimicry.
  • n. The appearance of symptoms of a disease not actually present.
  • n. The rhetorical pedagogy of imitation.
  • n. The imitation of another's gestures, pronunciation, or utterance.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Imitation; mimicry.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In rhetoric, imitation or reproduction of the supposed words of another, especially in order to represent his character. See prosopæa.
  • n. In zoology, mimicry; simulated resemblance; physical or physiological simulation by one animal of another, or of a plant or other part of its surroundings. See mimicry
  • n. The occurrence of symptoms, without organic basis or in the course of some disease, which simulate those of another disease.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the representation of another person's words in a speech
  • n. the imitative representation of nature and human behavior in art and literature
  • n. any disease that shows symptoms characteristic of another disease

Etymologies

Greek mīmēsis, from mīmeisthai, to imitate, from mīmos, imitator, mime.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek μίμησις (mīmēsis), from μιμεῖσθαι (mimeisthai, "to imitate"), from μῖμος (mīmos, "a mime"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • While the term mimesis surfaces in numerous fields with diverse connotations, in Girard desire itself tends to be mimetic or imitative.

    Bloodlust

  • Where mimesis is breached and the figurative function of the semiotic milieu foregrounded, the result may be a radical schism from reality.

    Archive 2009-12-01

  • To free repetition from mimesis is to allow it, as Adrian Parr puts it, "the possibility of reinvention, that is to say repetition dissolves identities as it changes them, giving rise to something unrecognisable and productive"

    Repetition, Representation and Revolution: Deleuze and Blake's _America_

  • Top Picks Stockholm Art Western art has many traditions but none quite so strong as that invoked by the Greek term mimesis, or "representation."

    Playing With Perception

  • I sometimes wonder if mimesis is really about how closely a work of art imitates life at all.

    Life imitates art

  • Her version of mimesis is strong enough for virtual worldmaking: it is a repeatable method for stimulating in the body an image that responds to the content of a particular idea.

    Seeing Is Reading

  • Scarry's humanism shares in this technoaestheticism: "Her version of mimesis is strong enough for virtual worldmaking: it is a specific, repeatable method for stimulating in the human body an image that responds to the content of a particular idea."

    Introduction

  • Poesie therefore, is an Art of Imitation: for so Aristotle termeth it in the word mimesis {24}, that is to say, a representing, counterfeiting, or figuring forth to speake Metaphorically.

    Defence of Poesie

  • Ultimately, I’d hope to be able to see both books of wonder and books of misery as filtered by the subjectivity of the writer, worldviews where the mimesis is always already coloured by the filters, narrowed by the blinkers.

    Bukiet on Brooklyn Books

  • For this reason, many therapists-beginning with Freud-have clients create a 'mimesis' - meaning they role-play the situation from the offending party's perspective.

    SteveFarber.com

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Comments

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  • Yes, seems to be the same origin as meme (see etyomology section).

    January 27, 2013

  • Is this the source of the internet "meme"?

    January 27, 2013