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> Sorry to butt in, but here's where you miss Derek's point
> completely. The only demonstrably consistent feature of
> "God is dead", are the words, and the letters they are composed of.
> There is no identified physical structure that you can demonstrate
> exists in my mind and yours that relates to this.
> That we both use our brains to process that phrase is
> certain, but when we're talking about memes, we're talking about
> units of replication that should retain their form when being
> transmitted (otherwise they don't replicate). There's no
> evidence for a mechanism in the brain that does that, indeed
> it's been well argued (by Derek in the journal) that
> it is highly unlikely such a mechanism exists. All one is left with
> that can retain its form, and can clearly be transmitted is the
> artifact of the written phrase "God is dead".
I guess I see what you mean Vincent. The meme manifests
itself differently in each person that adopts it.
The example, "God is dead" evokes different images in different
people; also people may interpret the meme differently (depending
on their prior memetic history or intelligence); the implications
it stands for vary among people; the meme might bring back related
memories also individually unique. So the representation of a
meme is rather personal, extremely complex, intricate and therefore varies
hopelessly to high extent among people. This makes identification of the
meme virtually impossible on a neural level.
However, I was wondering whether the artifact: in this case the
written sentence `God is dead' really is the only entity that retains
its form in transmission. When you pronounce the sentence in your head
without actually saying it, isn't that also a robust representation of
the meme. I mean, shouldn't this representation be more or less the same
in each person that imaginatively pronounces it.
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