In the social psychology literature, there is a lot of discussion about the pathways through which one achieves social belief formation (i.e. persuasion, coercion, etc.). These differ from those provided in the philosophy literature (i.e. imitation, contagion, etc.). And, the literature on social doxology is sparse.

Aside from the declining interest in memetics, there does not seem to be a robust body of contemporary literature on the social pathways through which beliefs (as opposed to memes) are transmitted.

Could someone point me in the right direction on where to look. I am new to this research area and might be missing something.

  • I'd suggest looking at the Social Ontology literature. I've seen some hints towards your topic of interest there. For a historical approach, you're looking at Hegel and Kierkegaard which might not be worth the effort to understand depending on the goals / size / level of your project.
    – virmaior
    Aug 18, 2014 at 8:32
  • How are beliefs different from memes? Aug 23, 2014 at 10:40
  • Hi, you tagged history-of-philosophy; are you only interested in 'contemporary literature'?
    – dwn
    Jan 21, 2015 at 21:45

1 Answer 1


Try the book Liars and Outliers: Enabling the Trust Society Needs to Thrive by Bruce Schneier it has a very extensive list of references and notes (many not included in the book) at the end of the book that I think would be relevant.

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