RE: implied or inferred memes

Gatherer, D. (
Wed, 22 Sep 1999 09:30:58 +0200

Date: Wed, 22 Sep 1999 09:30:58 +0200
From: "Gatherer, D. (Derek)" <>
Subject: RE: implied or inferred memes
To: "''" <>

Derek: Rogers & Shoemaker's classic account of the Peruvian villagers that
point-blamk refuse to boil water, are harder to explain as adaptive to the
meme. Can anyone explain this example?


Verrry interesting. I had not heard about that. Can you give a reference?


It's in chapter 1 of Rogers, E.M. and Shoemaker, F.F. (1971) Communication
of Innovations. A Cross-cultural Approach. 2nd ed. Free Press:
New York.

The work was done in the late 60s in upland Peru. Whether or not boiling
water was a taboo, I can't say for sure. I suspect not as R&S go into some
detail concerning the various 'meanings' that 'cooked' and 'raw' water had
in that culture, and also discuss (their favourite topic) the differences
between those who leapt upon the innovation and adopted it immediately, and
those who were resistant. The question of 'why?' is something they wrestle
with energetically without any convincing conclusion.

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