Re: memetics-digest V1 #1348

From: Philip Jonkers (
Date: Sun 18 May 2003 - 13:18:49 GMT

  • Next message: Philip Jonkers: "Re: transmission"

    That would be me:
    >> Either way I don't see the purpose of invoking the great Quantum Spirit
    >> In The Sky to describe cultural elements, even if they are small and
    >> intangible. Please enlighten me if you feel otherwise...

    >Quantum=the smallest quantity of some physical property that a system
    >can possess.
    >Assuming cultural evolution to be a system, then the quantum of this is
    >defined as the 'meme'.

    No not really, because as I have so repeatedly argued there is such a thing as memes within memes. Take a car for instance, which being a very successful meme in its own right consists of the even more successful meme the wheel, conbustion engine, wind-shields, the wheel consists of the pretty popular meme the rubber tire, bolts and screws for all I know.

    Or within the performance model, take a phenomenon like a kata for instance. Kata's are concepts used in martial arts which consist of usually long sequences of techniques, stances, blocks, to be performed by the MA practioner until it ideally becomes second nature. Now, each kata is a meme by itself. It is given a unique name, an important place within the MA system, and there are entire contests devoted at who the best performer of the kata at hand is. It's also tested at examinations. But all of the constituents of a kata are memes too such as the round-house kick, reverse punches, side-kicks, jumps, jump-kicks, strikes, blocks and what have you.

    So to suggest that the meme is an indivisable (atomic as I chose to call it) concept simply does not hold up to the truth.

    >Pretty simple. No invocations necessary.

    How very true, so stop doing it then.

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