A New Literacy – MEME

Introduction to Literacies – MEME

Our Journey

Donaghy & Xerri (2017) illustrate how visual literacy can be explored and used in the classroom via memes. As multimodal media offers rich learning experiences, so it requires learners to possess the necessary skills to contextualise the information being communicated. As described by Romero & Bobkina, (2017), memes are an incredibly useful media to stimulate learners’ interest in a topic or introduce a culturally significant idea.  Often developing into socially recognised, cultural artefacts, (Shifman, 2014), memes provide visual learners with multiple opportunities to develop their visual and critical literacy skills.


Our research began with a number of memes, each with it’s own specific cultural relevance and meaning. We were struck by the story behind the meme, ‘Doge’, and the creativity shown by netizens in the meme’s development. 

In terms of style, we were intrigued by the unique narration, lexical style, and sporadic placement of phrases. We were also drawn by the wide cultural relevance of ‘doge’.

Below, you will find a summary of our research and our final meme. 

– Shifman, L. (2014). Memes in digital culture. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

– Donaghy & Xerri, (2017). The Image in English Language Teaching. English Teaching Professional. Gutenberg Press.

– Romero,E & Bobkina,J. (2017). Teaching visual literacy through memes in the language classroom.

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