RE: back to basics

From: Lawrence DeBivort (
Date: Wed 28 May 2003 - 15:44:17 GMT

  • Next message: Richard Brodie: "RE: reply to Benzon"

    Greetings, everyone,

    I have been for months avoiding participating in the 'definition of a meme' and 'functional structure of a meme' threads, feeling that there were others more qualified to do so and quite content with my own pragmatical definitions and the pragmatic results that they permit.

    But every now and then I dip into a thread to see if there is progress, and here, this morning, awaits this delicious quote.... Tautological it is, and I am left wondering what the author's definition of a meme, itself, might be. I agree with Wade's observation that the definition assumes the existence of memes, which is the very thing that is being debated in these threads.

    BTW, I fully accept the existence of memes and utilize them. So if you guys end up disproving the existence memes of come up with a radically different definition, I am going to be way up the creek and left with replicable phenomena for which there is, apparently, no linguistic representation. I had better gird my Dawkinsian loins and be ready to come up with another nifty name for the phenomena, in case they turn out to be not-memes.

    Cheers to all, Lawry

    > -----Original Message-----
    > From: []On Behalf
    > Of Wade T. Smith
    > Sent: Wed, May 28, 2003 11:08 AM
    > To:
    > Subject: back to basics
    > On Wednesday, May 28, 2003, at 09:01 AM, Richard wrote:
    > > That's the definition of memetics.
    > "Memetics can be defined as an approach trying to model the evolution
    > of memes." (
    > Indeed, the vicious circle involved in the definition of memetics
    > requires that the meme be not only present, but fully accounted for.
    > And, IMHO, it ain't.

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