Re: sex and the single meme

Date: Sat Jan 26 2002 - 13:18:35 GMT

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    Subject: Re: sex and the single meme
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    On 25 Jan 2002, at 19:25, Keith Henson wrote:

    > Short term, I can give you all kind of examples
    > where memes and genes were at odds.

    I think one shouldn't be to fast with deciding whether memes are
    working against genes in some example. Take the suicide attacks
    as an example. I think there are mostly used to gain attention for
    some situation.

    Anyway let's just consider that a sucide attack helps a certain
    culture to survive. Okay, so one person gets killed and his genes
    won't survive too. Really? Is the person who committed suicide the
    only person who carried these genes? When you look at
    populations there are quite a high number of genes which are
    shared by most of its members. If someone commits suicide then
    this one instance of dna won't spread but if he saves the life of
    people who share 99,9% of genes with him, then his at first glance
    memetic-driven behavior also makes sense on a genetic level.

    This all works because memes indeed select genes, but we can
    define which memes become widely spread in culture. And suicide
    attacks are quite efficient so to speak. A suicide meme is not only
    that - it also has sourrounding memes which referr to some
    cultural/social problem which might have to be changed. And if it
    gets changed then some people (genetically) benefit from that.

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