language, creativity and science

Karthik Swaminathan (
Mon, 01 Dec 1997 16:06:08 -0500

Date: Mon, 01 Dec 1997 16:06:08 -0500
From: Karthik Swaminathan <>
Subject: language, creativity and science

Excuse my ignorance if I am wrong, but the paradigm
shift in memetics is seeing language as not a tool
of communication, but rather a vehicle for propogating
memes. Communication in its simpler forms does not
need language. It can be a purely physical expression
of behaviours and smells. Animals communicate in this
way. There is no symbol organization involved. Humans
communicate this way too but have the added layer of
language which enables to create and reinforce ideological
systems (used to develope forms of cooperative behaviour?).

My next question is on how does creativity in non-survival
persuits be explained in the Darwinian world. Art serves
no obviouse purpose and yet gets reinforced over and over.
I play violin and I enjoy playing violin, but I don't see
what the genetic purpose of this endeavor is. Why do we
have an imagination that can be used beyond creating useful
models in our world?

And the final question is if Memetics can be considered a
science. How can you test something like this? What makes
this any different than "scientific" investigation of the

Karthik Swaminathan
Interactive Telecommunications

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)