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Word of the Day
Saturday, May 24, 2014

Definitions for meta

  1. pertaining to or noting a story, conversation, character, etc., that consciously references or comments upon its own subject or features, often in the form of parody: A movie about making movie is just so meta—especially when the actors criticize the acting.
  2. pertaining to or noting an abstract, high-level analysis or commentary, especially one that consciously references something of its own type.
  3. a consciously and playfully self-referential story, conversation, etc.: That dialogue was an example meta at its best.

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Citations for meta
This is all meant to be very meta. In one arc, the Doom Patrol is able to stop an imaginary world from taking over the real world when the team finds a black book that tells the story of a black book about an imaginary world taking over the real world. Noah Berlatsky, "Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol: The Craziest Superhero Story Ever Told," The Atlantic, 2014
The meta craze in criticism soon reached a point of parody about self-conscious parody. William Safire, "What's the Meta?" The New York Times Magazine, 2005
Origin of meta
Meta can be traced to the Greek preposition of the same spelling meaning "with," "after," "between." It entered English in the late 1800s in the context of chemistry.