morality and memes

From: Steve Drew (
Date: Mon May 20 2002 - 23:34:58 BST

  • Next message: Steve Drew: "RE: New Scientist this week"

    Received: by id XAA20194 (8.6.9/5.3[ref] for from; Mon, 20 May 2002 23:43:47 +0100
    User-Agent: Microsoft-Entourage/9.0.2509
    Date: Mon, 20 May 2002 23:34:58 +0100
    Subject: morality and memes
    From: Steve Drew <>
    To: <>
    Message-ID: <>
    In-Reply-To: <>
    Content-type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"
    Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit
    Precedence: bulk

    > Date: Mon, 20 May 2002 11:54:54 +0100
    > From: Vincent Campbell <>
    > Subject: morality and memes
    > Hi,
    > Came across this definition of morality in a book about journalism (Klaidman
    > & Beauchamp's 'The Virtuous Journalist') whilst doing something entirely
    > un-memetics related the other day. They define morality as a set of
    > 'culturally transmitted rules of right and wrong conduct that establish the
    > basic terms of social life'.

    Don't have a problem with this.
    > Despite being an artefact-meme supporter, this piqued my interest. Can
    > morals be culturally transmitted, if so, how? If so, are they memes?

    Yes and yes.

    > More
    > fundamentally are morals innate, or culturally produced?

    My guess is cultural. Too many different kinds of behaviour that are
    considered 'moral'

    > If the latter,
    > how/why do some spread more than others? Are what we perceive of as innate
    > values, actually environmentally specific- which I mean in a way distinct
    > from culturally specific

    Probably a function of both. If we knew how they spread we would have a
    working theory of memes :-)

    >(e.g. isolated communities favouring polygamy due
    > to a gender imbalance).

    > I'm not sure what my own views are at this point in time, but it raised
    > these questions in my mind.
    > Any takers?

    Need to think about it more.



    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 May 21 2002 - 00:07:41 BST