RE: book suggestion

From: Vincent Campbell (
Date: Fri Sep 28 2001 - 15:42:08 BST

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    From: Vincent Campbell <>
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    Subject: RE: book suggestion
    Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2001 15:42:08 +0100
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    More on books,

    I've just received a copy of Gary Taylor's 1996 tome 'Cultural Selection'
    which looks like a lit. crit. approach to the topic, no mention of memes in
    the index, so we'll see.

    Anyway, sat here looking through a Lawrence Erlbaum publishers catalogue of
    books on media & communication (as you might expect as a media studies
    lecturer I get these all the time), I spy a book called 'The Biology of
    Communication' by Michael Beatty & James McCroskey (2001). It is apparently
    about 'communibiology', a 'theoretical framework for developing and testing
    biologically-oriented communication theory'.

    Has anyone heard of communibiology before? It looks/sounds like a dreadful
    word to me, but there may be some meat to its bones. Or it may raise
    people's hackles more than a limping Thompson's gazelle would a


    > ----------
    > From: Scott Chase
    > Reply To:
    > Sent: Wednesday, September 26, 2001 10:09 pm
    > To:
    > Subject: Re: book suggestion
    > >From: Vincent Campbell <>
    > >Reply-To:
    > >To: "''" <>
    > >Subject: book suggestion
    > >Date: Tue, 25 Sep 2001 15:55:11 +0100
    > >
    > >Hiya everyone,
    > >
    > >Just received a copy of Lee Cronk's 'That Complex Whole: Culture and the
    > >Evolution of Human Behaviour' (1999, Westview Press, ISBN 0813337054)
    > >
    > >Cronk appears to be a cultural anthropologist not aversed to views about
    > >the
    > >origin of culture stemming from evolutionary theory, and is also
    > pro-memes.
    > >Flicking through his bit about memes just now he seems to partly offer a
    > >cultural traits line, partly a mind virus line, partly a sexual selection
    > >line. I'll need to read it more closely to work out his position.
    > >
    > >Linking to the discussion about the cultural/natural position o f war, he
    > >does have a couple of interesting things to say about war (p80). In
    > >reference to the relationship between reproductive success and conformity
    > >to
    > >cultural practices, he refers to the apparent nature of reproductive
    > >success
    > >for male Yanomamo being related not to wealth or hunting skill (as it is
    > >for
    > >some other tribes), but from fighting prowess- particularly if they've
    > >killed others. He stresses that this doesn't make it a universal
    > principle
    > >for reproductive success, though.
    > >
    > >I'm waiting on another book, that I think someone on the list
    > recommended.
    > >More on that when it arrives.
    > >
    > >Vincent
    > >
    > >
    > I've been reading Gary Cziko's _The Things We Do_ (2000. MIT Press.
    > Cambridge, Massachusetts, ISBN 0-262-03277-5). He talks about circular
    > causation and physiological homeostasis where effects supposedly feedback
    > to
    > causes, a view less simplistic than the standard unidirection linear cause
    > leads to effect view. Not too bad of a book so far, but I could not pass
    > up
    > this particular quote (p. 178-9):
    > (bq) "The human immune system's primary function is to protect our bodies
    > from microscopic pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and chemical toxins
    > that are collectively known as *antigens*. It does this by producing cells
    > called *antibodies* that are able to recognize invading antigens and bind
    > with them so that other cells produced by the immune system can find and
    > neutralize or destroy them." (eq)
    > There's something not quite right with this passage considering that
    > antibodies are proteins and that cells known as B-lymphocytes produce
    > antibodies. I'm not sure you can equate pathogens with antigens. If I'm
    > not
    > mistaken, antigens are molecules and as such could be contained by a
    > pathogen. A given pathogen could contain more than one antigen.
    > This gaffe aside the larger point in this part of Cziko's book of
    > intraselection operating within an organism over its lifetime was not
    > lost.
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    > This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    > Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
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    > see:

    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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