RE: transmission

From: Keith Henson (
Date: Sat 17 May 2003 - 03:14:25 GMT

  • Next message: Reed Konsler: "Re: Performance vs. Mind"

    At 08:59 PM 16/05/03 -0400, you wrote:

    >>From: Philip Jonkers <>
    >>Subject: RE: transmission
    >>Date: Fri, 16 May 2003 04:07:29 -0700 (PDT)
    >> >It's another interesting aspect of memetics that most of the discussion on
    >> >this list comes from people saying things that go counter to the general
    >> >understanding of the field. Posts that concur with the mainstream generally
    >> >pass without comment.
    >>Indeed, controversy provokes! Agreement in general does not encourage
    >>replies (other than to give complementary comments or additions to that
    >>which is being agreed upon).
    >My controversy provoking posts where I likened evolutionary psychology to
    >phrenology due to some shared commonalities (eg- modularity) received a
    >reply by Dace. Keith has, AFAICT, been silent on this as his phrenological
    >bugbear has been compared to his EP raison d'etre.

    I remember thinking the logic was so convoluted it was not worth responding to.

    >EP probably has much more going for it now than phrenology did then, but
    >some of the basic assumptions seem quite similar, as I've posted upon before.
    >Too bad Gall and Spurzheim didn't have the wonderful modern neuroimaging
    >techniques at their disposal at the time they were theorizing. Here I'm
    >countering Keith's Whiggish attitude towards phrenology with a little bit
    >of anachronism.

    I was just using it as an example of a meme that ran afoul of the metameme of the scientific method.

    >Phrenology is to psychology as Lamarckism is to biology. They are both
    >whipping boys in these modern fields so that first year students will have
    >someone to disparage.

    I don't remember that from my first year courses, but it *has* been a long time.

    >Closer inspection may reveal that people like Gall and Lamarck actually
    >made more than an erroneous contribution to history of science.

    :-) Right. Like some people contribute to memetics.

    Keith Henson

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