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date: 29 May 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Leadership has fascinated people since antiquity. This fascination has given rise to countless intergenerational transmissions and replications of leadership stories, legends, fables, and lessons. These transmissions have coalesced into at least the four leader memes described here: leader-warrior, leader–problem solver, leader-politician, and leader-teacher. In this chapter, each meme is presented along with a brief summary of historical and cultural replicated exemplars that provide memetic content. The influences of memes are seen in modern theories and models of leadership. Thus, this chapter indicates the scientific frameworks of leadership that reflect the core ideas of each leader meme.. Finally, memes can influence the weight people place on particular traits and attributes in their leader prototypes. Likewise, their orientation to and interpretation of leadership experiences are in turn influenced by memetic-infused leader self-identities. These dynamics determine a person’s selection of leader development activities. This chapter concludes with a discussion of these relationships.

Keywords: leader memes, leader prototypes, leader self-identities, leader development

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