From: Lawrence DeBivort (email@example.com)
Date: Tue 03 Dec 2002 - 14:43:03 GMT
I haven't followed the latest round of 'what's a meme?' discussion due to
time constraints (and my own operational satisfaction with my own
definition), but do assume that by 'performance' you would include the
speaking of a meme, or the writing of it.
If this is so, how in your memetic scheme would you handle the 'idea' that
someone thinks of or speaks to himself internally, that is, that has no
externally discernable performance?
One way to find dead memes (and by dead I mean: no longer self-propagating)
is to read texts that were composed at a time the meme was still current --
a museum-in-books, if you will.
Interesting observation about the Inuit artifacts. I wonder what, beyond
sadness, the reactions of all assembled were? Was there pride in the
preservation of the artifacts? Was there a suspicion that had the artifacts
not been taken, that they might have attained an honored position within
Inuit society, complete with memory of what the artifacts had signified?
Was it thought that the Inuit visitors were free to ascribe (new) meaning to
> -----Original Message-----
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com]On Behalf
> Of Wade Smith
> Sent: Tuesday, December 03, 2002 9:03 AM
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: Re: Japanese Univ. to set up world meme bank
> On Tuesday, December 3, 2002, at 08:53 , Lawrence DeBivort wrote:
> > It might be more interesting (and more feasible) for the university to
> > catalog those ideas that have become obsolete or have died.
> Seems like a paradox, finding an idea that is no longer there. Of
> course, you could go look for one where the light is better....
> But then, as the Zim has said, 'inside the museums, infinity goes up on
> I again am reminded of those artifacts of the Tlingit that were recently
> brought out of the vaults of the Peabody here at Harvard, and shown to a
> group of visiting elders, who, alas, had no idea what some of the items
> were, although they made some guesses, but could only shrug, saddened
> with the loss.
> Museums are, in fact, already storehouses of ideas that are dead, or
> just as dead, obsolete. We can only catalog these finds by place and
> time, not by meaning.
> IMHO, it is impossible to find a dead idea.
> Kind of like those memesinthemind I hear tell about. I don't know about
> them until someone performs something, and I never know what was in that
> mind, or even what is in mine, because when I perform my version of it
> (deduced in some way from the observed performance), unless repetition
> and skill have allowed me to repeat performances with a high degree of
> accuracy, I don't know what is going to happen, and, indeed, no
> performer, regardless of skill or expertise, can predict the precise
> then and there performance.
> And it is the precise then and there performance that gets observed.
> - Wade
> 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)
> see: http://www.cpm.mmu.ac.uk/jom-emit
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)
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