What is the meaning of the term mytheme?
When did the term first come into use, and what are some examples of mythemes?
Mythology & Folklore Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for enthusiasts and scholars of mythology and folklore. It only takes a minute to sign up.Sign up to join this community
Oxford dictionaries provides us with the following definition:
In structuralist anthropology and literary criticism:
each of a set of fundamental generic units of narrative structure (typically involving a relationship between a character, an event, and a theme) from which myths are thought to be constructed.
It is, in effect, a common ground between different mythological stories.
Vampires and Selkies for example might be based on a mytheme of shapeshifting.
Hades and Nirvana may have the mytheme of the afterlife.
I hope this answers your question.