Re: Reductionism in Memetics

Tim Rhodes (
Thu, 21 Jan 1999 09:46:51 -0800

From: "Tim Rhodes" <>
To: <>
Subject: Re: Reductionism in Memetics
Date: Thu, 21 Jan 1999 09:46:51 -0800

Paul Marsden wrote:

>Before we consign reductionism to the rest of scientific method we are
>having such fun jettisoning in this post-modern orgy, just a couple of
>thoughts from a reductionist.
>Methodological or explanatory reductionism is the scientific method -
>complex wholes must be explain in terms of their parts; now that does not
>imply a one:one relationship between levels, or that the properties of a
>complex whole are simply the sum of the properties of the parts (that would
>be just as idiotic as simply claiming emergent levels by shifting the
>to one from a cloud in the sky) simply that explanation involves explaining
>emergence not positing it. Let's have ,as Rob Clewley, suggests emergence
>without magic.

Just out of curiosity, can you direct me to a list of the empirical studies
in this regard which support -- rather than just utilize -- the hypothesis
that "complex wholes _must_ be explained in terms of their parts"?

-Tim Rhodes

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