RE: Memetic vulnerability: was: Faking It

From: Vincent Campbell (
Date: Fri Jul 20 2001 - 11:24:56 BST

  • Next message: Chris Taylor: "Re: Memetic vulnerability: was: Faking It"

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    From: Vincent Campbell <>
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    Subject: RE: Memetic vulnerability: was: Faking It
    Date: Fri, 20 Jul 2001 11:24:56 +0100
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    If I can link this comment to your response to Chris where you mention
    racism, again whilst there are differences in the details of particular
    racisms, there are surely underlying commonalities to beliefs in order for
    them to be called racist in the first place? These would include the
    discrimination against a particular group of people due to them being of a
    different ethnic or national origin.

    In principle one might be able to reconstruct an ancestral meme from
    analysing the components of a range of related memes, a bit like linguists
    do when trying to construct root languages in a particular family, and as
    some genetic scientists are doing with genes. According to New Scientist,
    some research team have reconstructed a gene sequence of a yeast from the
    time of the dinosaurs through this method of comparing contemporary yeasts,
    and working out the genes common to an ancestor.

    There are hox genes as well, which provide body blueprints, so that if you
    fiddle with them, you get all sorts of primordial features appearing (IIRC
    correctl chickens with teeth, although that might have been achieved a
    different way).

    Anyway, aren't we risking obscuring the underlying pattern in groups of
    memes by regarind ghem as unique, a bit like saying all snowflakes are
    unique without noticing their underlying symmetrical similarities?

    I guess I'm not sure what value your idea has from a theoretical (or
    empirical) point of view?


    > ----------
    > From: Kenneth Van Oost
    > Reply To:
    > Sent: Thursday, July 19, 2001 9:39 pm
    > To:
    > Subject: Re: Memetic vulnerability: was: Faking It
    > Hi Vincent,
    > You wrote,
    > ----- Original Message -----
    > From: Vincent Campbell <>
    > To: <>
    > > I'm not sure I agree with this Kenneth,
    > > If we look at nature, surely we see patterns of species in lots of
    > different
    > > environments developing the same responses, to highly consistent
    > > environmental features, e.g. lots of species have eyes (of varying
    > kinds).
    > > [is that what they call convergent evolution?] Surely memes must work
    > > within the limited (perhaps not as limited as the physical world for
    > natural
    > > selection) environment of human society?
    > << In my view memes still work within the limited environment of human
    > society !
    > But I think I construes the notion of limitation a little bit more broadly
    > as you do. In a sense, I expand that limitation beyond the sensorial
    > bounderies. I expand the concept of memes as far as the concept of
    > abstraction, whereby the consequence of any possible meme gets
    > directly included in the way I present the subject.
    > I include directly a " practical " way of application if you like.
    > And by the same token of abstraction " anything " can " act " as a meme
    > in such a form of concept.
    > Not sure this makes sense,
    > Best regards,
    > Kenneth
    > ( I am, because we are)
    > ===============================================================
    > 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)
    > see:

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    =============================================================== 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) see:

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