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Ah, the weekend's over, and the storm's upon us.
Sorry if these comments are behind the debate's current stage.
<There are real theoretical problems with requiring that something
> be actually replicated, rather than replicable, to be a meme.>
OK, but the notion that something can be a replicator without
replicating is surely even more problematic?
<Suppose that a person learns two different chunks of information.
> passes on, one he does not. What distinguishes them? If we say that the
> only theoretical distinction is that one is passed on, that raises the
> question of why? Is there some mysterious memetic force that makes one
> chunk replicate while the other does not?
To be cultural it must be passed on. Culture is not something
individuals have, communities have them, societies have them.
Culture is a plural concept, it requries more than one individual. Hence,
if memes are units of culture, whether that be cultural transmission or
cultural inheritance, then there are distinct in that regard. As to why,
well that is the 64,000 dollar question. I don't pretend to have an answer
to that one, especially for those apparently non-adaptive behaviours like
<If we are going to distinguish memes from other culturally
> material, the fact of transmission is not the way to do it. The purpose
> of memetic theory is to explain cultural inheritance. If we simply
> determine what is a meme by the fact that it is culturally inherited, we
> are mumbling tautologies.>
I don't see this. I think it's crucial we distinguish between any
piece of information and cultural information if we are to usefully have the
term meme at all, otherwise it's not needed- 'information' already serves
perfectly well if there is no distinction.
I'd be interested to see what other things you consider to be
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