Re: Study shows brain can learn without really trying
From: Ray Recchia (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Wed Nov 21 2001 - 00:00:05 GMT
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Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2001 19:00:05 -0500
From: Ray Recchia <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Study shows brain can learn without really trying
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We can speak of a proto-culture
among primates, or even ants, but it's not
the same as human culture. The elements are there, but it hasn't
life," so to speak. It's the seed, not the tree. Not so different
proto-capitalism of antiquity as compared to the true capitalism of
modernity. Memes are only really *memes* when they've germinated under
heat lamp of human consciousness and, after getting buried, begin to
their magic. Only then are they carriers of culture. If the
behavior or concept is strictly a function of unreflective mentality,
it's just biology. There's no need to call it a "meme." Just a
No reason not to call it a meme actually Ted. All memes are a
function of biology to some degree. The biologically evolved brain
is where these things reside no matter what the species. I think
that in defining meme we ought be true to the intent of inventor of the
word. In 'The Self Gene' Dawkins defined the meme as a second
selfish replicator analogous to the gene. No consciousness is
necessary for the first replicator and we ought not insist that the
second replicator requires it either. This is not to say there
isn't some sort of significant difference between memes found in animals
and memes found in humans, but there is a difference between the genes
found in single celled and multi celled organisms.
I suspect that whatever the difference we find in human memes we will
also find that animal like memes are transmitted by humans as well.
I believe that by studying animal memetic processes we can gain
significant insights into our own memetic processes as well.
This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
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