Re: What Meaning Means

From: Douglas Brooker (
Date: Sun 18 Jun 2006 - 17:13:34 GMT

  • Next message: Chris Lofting: "RE: What Meaning Means"

    Robin Faichney wrote:

    >Sunday, June 18, 2006, 10:17:12 AM, I wrote:
    >>You're equating memes with meaning, which is simply wrong. You should
    >>go right back and read the last chapter of The Selfish Gene again. Or
    >>for the first time, as the case may be. I don't know where you get the
    >>nerve to lecture people in a specialist area of which you are so
    >>woefully ignorant.
    >For the second time in two days I find myself having to post a
    >retraction. Yesterday it was just fuzzy thinking, this morning I was
    >in a bad mood and over-reacted. It does seem obvious to me that
    >memetics is not about meaning, but of course some people do take the
    >opposite view, and it's probably not the case that simply re-reading
    >TSG would instantly change their minds. Dawkins was guilty of fuzzy
    >thinking himself, in my opinion, when he included ideas in that famous
    >list of examples.
    perhaps this will be irrelevant, perhaps not - at least your earlier message set the thought process in motion

    a comparable situation in my field of the anthropology of legal doctrine concerns the characterisation of "tradition".

    in one sense tradition refers to a process of transmission, in another sense it is a body or unit of knowledge or belief.

    The emphasis dictionaries and some writers place on tradition-as-transmission over tradition-as-knowledge-or-belief is surprising because it is contrary to common usage. A key point is how the two are related.

    the issue also evokes an obscure linguistic problem, the "utraquistic subterfuge" the classic example of which is failure to distinguish between the process of knowing and the knowledge that is the result of that process.



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