Re: (Sociology's problems)

From: Van oost Kenneth (
Date: Fri 13 Feb 2004 - 20:11:42 GMT

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    ----- Original Message ----- From: "Steven Thiele" <>
    > One of the fundamental problems facing memetics is the relations between
    > genes and memes. Did memes arise out of genes? If genes are central to
    > biological life (which was Dawkin's argument at the time he came up with
    > the idea of memes), and memes are central to social life, then surely
    > must have evolved from genes - where else could they have come from?
    > Memetics is supposedly derived from an evolutionary outlook, yet one of
    > most fundamental evolutionary issues, the evolution of memes, has not been
    > attended to.


    Maybe we ought to look p.e. at the evolution of form to get an idea of how and why objects around us evolve. Different form, different meme.

    The lineage, a straight arrow, over the crossbow, the flashlamp, V1- V2, Saturnus 5- rocket and finally the Space- Shuttle can be seen as a sequence of evolving forms and thus reducible to an evolutionary line of ideas/ memes.

    And for the problem- issue, I don 't really think there is something proble- matic about it. IMO, it all bowls down to the same ol' dull routine of questioning the relation between individual- collective.

    McIver, an American sociologist argued,
    " ...all people are in some respect amateur- sociologists: -each have formed from one's own experience an image of how society is all about and one knows a few bare facts of how it works. Besides of having a certain
    " knowledge " most people do have certain " explanations " for what they know of suppose to know. And finally people do have also a certain
    " judgement ", positive or negative , over what they know or think they know. "

    Sociology, is on the one hand not even necassary because people ' know ' already everything and on the other hand it is feared because it questions inbedded and trusted assumptions.

    In some regard, like Keith mentioned, sociology is replaced by evolutio- nary psychology, but I like to remind of the fact that not everything can be pinned down using psychology. Reading Time- magazine and mate- swopping may be part of our cultural heritage, but what goes on in people's mind doing this things is complete private and can 't be known by us, even psychologists think they ' know '... Official <-> semi- official , remerber !?



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