Re: pls direct me to a memetics list <eom>

Date: Wed May 15 2002 - 14:29:17 BST

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    Subject: Re: pls direct me to a memetics list <eom>
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    -----Original Message-----
    From: "Scott Chase" <>
    Date: Tue, 14 May 2002 19:21:37 -0400
    Subject: Re: pls direct me to a memetics list <eom>

    > >I have expressed on numerous occassions my interest in 'memetic'
    > >transmission in animals in works by de Waal, Dugatkin, and Pepperberg.
    > >
    > And regaring de Waal, what's his views on memetics in _The Ape and the
    > Sushi
    > Master_ again? Was he especially fond of memetics, burning with
    > enthusiasm
    > to jump on the bandwagon?

    No he wasn't. But I wasn't given the impression he had put a lot of
    thought into his criticism.

    Bottom line: Just because deWaal doesn't think memetics is useful to him
    doesn't mean deWaal isn't useful to memetics.

    > >
    > >In a broad sense everything cultural is memetic and thus anything
    > >cultural can be discussed. Personally I believe that we are better
    > off
    > >avoiding hot button topics like current events because different
    > >cultures, political perspectives, and religious beliefs can lead to
    > >different conclusions which is unlikely to lead a broadly accepted
    > theory
    > >of memetics. I don't get particularly upset when I see diversions
    > into
    > >discussion of these areas because I think that it is something that
    > >happens as a result of the open nature of this list. I'd rather not
    > see
    > >it happen but I don't die when it does.
    > >
    > I think the hot button issues are especiaaly important to discuss and I
    > could stand to learn tons more myself. I've always had a fascination
    > for
    > conflict (would that make me a Marxist?) I'm drawn like a moth towards
    > the
    > Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the Northern Ireland troubles. Other
    > conflicts that involve "hot-button" isues are those like the
    > animalrights
    > versus utilization and research conflict, the evolution/creation
    > controversy
    > and such. I can't remember the details off the top of my head but back
    > around 1996 there was some big pro-animal event in Washington DC which
    > attracted luminaries such as Jane Goodall. It also attracted
    > pro-research
    > activists fighting for AIDS related research (like ACT-UP IIRC). There
    > were
    > some minor conflicts IIRC as opposing political viewpoints clashed.
    > Animal
    > rights and AIDS research are important issues where PETA and ACT-UP
    > might
    > not exactly see eye to eye.
    > The trouble arises when one cannot become objectively detached from the
    > conflict.

    Right. I think they are important issues and I have opinions on a lot of
    them. I understand the need that people feel to discuss them. I just
    don't do it here and I have a problem with using memetics to justify
    political or religious belief.

    > >
    > >Of course what I don't like is when people who aren't really
    > interested
    > >in memetics at all try to shove the list into other areas.
    > >
    > Some of us are interested in seeing self-proclaimed memeticists
    > becoming a
    > little less captivated by imagination and a little more self-critical.
    > When
    > I see comparisons drawn between memetics "technology" and nuclear
    > technology
    > as having similar magnitudes of importance, I get a little worked up
    > into a
    > rabid lather.
    > >
    > >Still it's
    > >better than being at alt.evolution where you can rehash the same old
    > >stuff with creationists for years if you want.
    > >
    > >
    > That's where you can study people with opposed mind sets going at it
    > like
    > mad. What's so wrong with that?

    Gets a bit repetitious after a while.

    Ray Recchia


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