Re: Kate's book/ "recessive memes"

From: Scott Chase (
Date: Fri 25 Mar 2005 - 03:14:11 GMT

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    --- wrote:

    > Dear Kate and Everyone:
    > This has been a really interesting discussion. I
    > just wanted to throw
    > in my two cents. Unexpressed certainly makes more
    > sense than
    > recessive, but I think there is a third way of
    > looking at this. In
    > Gregory Batesons work on play he discovered that
    > interactions between
    > systems evolve. He found that certain stable
    > patterns of behavior are
    > selected for in any interaction between systems. I
    > think that there is
    > a danger of subtle reductionism when analyzing
    > things in terms of
    > memetics. This reductionism occurs when the
    > evolution of ideas is
    > viewed in a sterile manner, without looking at the
    > interaction between
    > organisms. An example of this sort of reductionism
    > is the failure of
    > memetics to look at interspecies communication in a
    > meaningful way.
    > Gregory Bateson in his books Ecology of the Mind,
    > and Mind and Nature:
    > Towards a Unity discovered many of the principals of
    > memetics through
    > human dolphin interactions.
    > The point is that things that are seen as being
    > caused by an
    > unexpressed meme are sometimes the interaction of
    > thinking systems,
    > which form a larger system in which a new behavior
    > arises effecting the
    > growth of the two interacting systems. If a system
    > of interaction
    > between the two systems remains stable it will
    > persist. In this way
    > these interactions form the basis for memetics.
    > Reading what I've
    > written it sounds hopelessly underdeveloped. Really
    > I was wondering if
    > anyone on this list has looked at Gregory Bateson
    > and his work, I can't
    > really develop these ideas myself; I'm bogged down
    > in my work. I'll
    > try and send a passage from Gregory Batesons book in
    > the next few days
    > if anyone is interested. Keep up the discussion.
    I read one of his books a while back. I'll need to look into him again. Wasn't his dad William Bateson and Margaret Mead his wife. IIRC his dad played a role in going after Kammerer during the midwife toad controversy. I also vaguely recall him using Jung's Sermons to the Dead in some unusual way (ie-pleroma and all that esoteric stuff from MDR).

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