Re: Words and Memes

From: Dace (
Date: Thu Feb 14 2002 - 01:58:13 GMT

  • Next message: Ray Recchia: "Narrative from Edward O. for Jeremy B."

    Received: by id CAA20422 (8.6.9/5.3[ref] for from; Thu, 14 Feb 2002 02:02:44 GMT
    Message-ID: <004b01c1b4fb$11635cc0$a424f4d8@teddace>
    From: "Dace" <>
    To: <>
    References: <> <003701c1b2b0$fa01e160$8086b2d1@teddace> <006001c1b445$33346760$5e2ffea9@oemcomputer>
    Subject: Re: Words and Memes
    Date: Wed, 13 Feb 2002 17:58:13 -0800
    Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
    Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
    X-Priority: 3
    X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
    X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 5.50.4133.2400
    X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V5.50.4133.2400
    Precedence: bulk

    From: Philip Jonkers

    > Ted:
    > > I read the introduction to The Meme Machine after Philip posted it.
    > > I'm well aware that she follows Dennett in denying the reality of the
    > > self. So it's no wonder she fails to recognize the self-nature of
    > > memes. Blackmore misses the main narrative of memetics, which
    > > concerns the shifting of authority from human consciousness to the
    > > ideas we create. Ideas ordinarily have no self-nature but replicate
    > > from mind to mind according to our intentional interactions with each
    > > other. They become memes only when they begin replicating under
    > > their own authority.
    > As far as I know Blackmore only the denies the reality of the self as an
    > inner homunculi or `soul'. She conceives the self as a (huge) collection
    > of memes and calls it therefore appropriately the `self-plex'.

    It's one thing to deny the existence of a little person working the controls
    of the brain or an immortal soul that migrates from body to body. It's
    quite another to define the self out of existence altogether. Blackmore
    explains our alleged hallucination of self-existence by claiming that the
    memes which promote this illusion have a competitive advantage over other
    memes. What she can't explain is who or what is fooled by this illusion.

    I am not a collection of replicating ideas. I am singular and whole. A
    self-plex is not a true self. It's a fancy name for ego. Like Dennett,
    Blackmore confuses the self with our ingrained self-image.

    > In addition,
    > if anything she does consider the self-nature of memes as she focusses
    > on the interpretation of the meme's eye view in the Meme-Machine. She
    > even does it to such extent that she leaves the impression of underrating
    > the necessary mechanism of memes having to persuade the hosts for
    > adoption.
    > Perhaps you might want to read her book in full Ted, you may find that it
    > more on a par with your view than you currently believe.

    Sounds like she attributes self-nature to memes but not to people. In my
    view, memetics is all about the struggle between reflective human
    self-replicators and unreflective memetic self-replicators. Not that I
    wouldn't enjoy her book, of course.


    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)

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Feb 14 2002 - 02:21:44 GMT