From: Keith Henson (email@example.com)
Date: Wed 04 Jun 2003 - 02:34:49 GMT
At 11:23 AM 03/06/03 -0700, Dace wrote:
> > From: Keith Henson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> > For the life of me can't see why you warp the extremely simple definition
> > of a meme (element of culture, replicating information) into such a
> > shape.
>I'm trying to narrow the definition of "meme" so that it doesn't apply to
>every piece of information that passes from one person to another.
I don't see any reason you need to make such complications when there are
obvious cases where information (like telling a person what time it is or
where you are is not a meme since it is not persistent information.
>no reason to invoke the concept of self-replication for most such
You can make a difference if you want to between relatively passive and
relatively active memes, i.e., ones that are replicated because they are
useful (shoes) or novel (new songs, fads) and ones that induced their
holders to go out and spread the cult meme.
>Your approach flies in the face of standard social and
>psychological analysis. Can you explain why decades of research are wrong?
Please cite such studies. I am not aware of any that refute the concept of
replicating cultural information.
>I don't think either of us is in a position to do that, which is why I offer
>a definition that doesn't conflict with established science.
There is a *lot* going for simplicity. Your way of looking at memes is a
lot more complicate than the way I look at them, in fact, my approach is
the least complicated I know about.
PS. Religion Explained is a really excellent book. I am most of the way
through it. Religion is only a small part of it, the main focus is on how
minds really work. Boyer is summing up many decades of most interesting work.
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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