RE: Knowledge, Memes and Sensory Perception

From: Joe Dees (
Date: Tue Jan 15 2002 - 00:40:57 GMT

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    From: "Joe Dees" <>
    Subject: RE: Knowledge, Memes and Sensory Perception
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    >Date: Mon, 14 Jan 2002 19:22:58 -0500
    > "Francesca S. Alcorn" <> RE: Knowledge, Memes and Sensory PerceptionReply-To:
    >>I think in a post analysis the real competition will be seen as
    >>between "western" culture and everything else. "Western" in this
    >>sense includes Japan and the advanced countries of south Asia as
    >>well as the more traditional countries. Japan, for example,
    >>contributes significant cultural elements to the rest of "Western"
    >>culture. "Popular" is another name for it. Religion is not a major
    >>It's hard to describe all the major elements, but music, fashion,
    >>movies and TV shows are parts of it. High tech gadgets are part of
    >>it, and to a lesser extent, the free market environment it takes to
    >>make them. (No way you can do a 5 year plan to produce things
    >>nobody has invented yet!)
    >>Near as I can tell nobody in power cares if western/popular culture
    >>pushes into Islamic culture and displaces it or not. Because it is
    >>not static, the older leaders of the western countries usually
    >>express disdain for their own popular culture. Can't blame them,
    >>piercings give me fantods. (Meme of the day, nipple rings and chain
    >>mail is a bad combination.)
    >I think you are so right here. I have come to think that one of the
    >defining characteristics of Western Culture is the way in which it
    >overwhelms most (all?) of the indigenous cultures with which it has
    >come into contact. I first heard of memes shortly before I left for
    >Africa where I lived for three years. Living in a country where the
    >old culture (memes) were coming into contact with Western culture, it
    >was interesting to watch which memes were robust enough to survive
    >the onslaught of Western culture and which were not. And which
    >Western cultural memes (and technologies) were embraced and which
    >were not. This process occurs in any situation where two cultures
    >collide - be it in an African country, or in a marriage where two
    >family cultures collide. I heard echoes of the village elder's
    >complaining about the loss of their culture in some of Bin Laden's
    >statements (but without his virulence or hatred.)
    >I have not read all of the books which many of you on the list refer
    >to. I must admit I am mostly interested at looking at the qualities
    >of a meme which make it more robust and more likely to survive in the
    >types of situations which I described. Can anyone point me in the
    >direction of some good literature on this subject? I have been
    >fascinated by memes ever since I first read an excerpt of Dawkins in
    >"The Mind's I", and didn't realize that such following has sprung up
    >around the concept until I found this list. I am a therapist and a
    >mother of two small children, so I haven't had the time to stay
    >current that I would have liked to. What do you all recommend to
    >bring me up to speed.
    >CULTURAL SOFTWARE: A Theory of Ideology by J. M. Balkin is an interesting source.
    >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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    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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