Re: memetics-digest V1 #952

From: Steve Drew (
Date: Tue Feb 19 2002 - 21:28:17 GMT

  • Next message: Steve Drew: "Memes and CUlture Wars"

    Received: by id VAA12162 (8.6.9/5.3[ref] for from; Tue, 19 Feb 2002 21:36:32 GMT
    X-Originating-IP: []
    User-Agent: Microsoft-Outlook-Express-Macintosh-Edition/5.02.2022
    Date: Tue, 19 Feb 2002 21:28:17 +0000
    Subject: Re: memetics-digest V1 #952
    From: Steve Drew <>
    To: Jom-emit <>
    Message-ID: <>
    Content-type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"
    Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit
    X-OriginalArrivalTime: 19 Feb 2002 21:30:47.0757 (UTC) FILETIME=[B2181FD0:01C1B98C]
    Precedence: bulk

    >Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2002 21:48:55 -0800
    From: "Dace" <>

    Subject: Re: memetics-digest V1 #952<

    Hi Ted

    > How can a meme be *self-motivated*. I assume this was a typo, else we are
    > talking the equivalent of the *selfish gene* nonsense.

    >You might as well say memes are nonsense. The whole idea, as expressed by
    Dawkins, is that units of culture are selfish in the same (nonhuman) way
    that genes are selfish. We're just been over this recently. Dawkins makes
    it perfectly clear that genes are indeed selfish, as long as we don't
    anthropomorphize the term.<

    The point i was making - badly :-)

    > To me, as i have said a few times before and will probably say again,
    > behaviours fall into a continuum from that of choice to that of automatic
    > response.

    >The continuum is between choice and *habit.* Automatic responses within
    organisms tell us very little about their forms. Every polypeptide could
    theoretically fold into any number of possible proteins. Only through habit
    does the polypeptide know how to fold into the correct form. Habit is based
    on memory, not mechanics.<

    Again, my error. I should not have used automatic without qualification. i
    meant behaviours that have been acquired through social learning - memes -
    that we are not consciously aware of.

    > Eg, at some of the motorcycle rallies i attend it is customary to
    > shake hands with old acquaintances. i invariably adopt the standard palm
    > palm response that most people automatically do. the *correct* response
    > which i have to think about and consciously do is that of the *warriors*
    > handshake which is palm to wrist. (sounds sad i know, but the people and
    > parties are good fun).
    > Regards
    > Steve

    A nice illustration of the difference between memetic and intentional




    This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Tue Feb 19 2002 - 21:56:28 GMT