This was mentioned in the Mimesis and Alterity book. quoting from an abstract about the book: "According to Tarde, these laws of imitation are universal laws that apply not only to the social sciences but also to the natural sciences (the living world and physical phenomena). Thus imitation is the main element in social cohesiveness (there are two others: opposition and adaptation). Society is not defined by the economic criterion (or law) of utility (mutual exchange of services) and division of labour but by the criterion (or law) of imitation. It is made up of individuals who resemble each other because they imitate (or counter-imitate) each other."
so quaint. i think the last time it was checked out was 2001. i'm working my way through the pdf.