Thank you, Professor Goldsbury.
How do you do?
Peter A Goldsbury
Hello Mr Lehnen,
I did my academic training in the US before Dawkins wrote his book and before the concept was popularized at the hands of Hofstater and Dennett. (When I was at Harvard, Dennett had written only Content and Consciousness and he used this text in his course.) So memes, whether selfish or altruistic, never penetrated as far as the Department of Classics, where I was.
As I was brought up in one of the late Humboldtian Humanistic Gymnasiums, I had to keep up with some ancient Greek, a long time ago.
Anyway, somehow, the outer similarity of meme with mimema clicked in. I thought it funny that "meme" should be kind of acoustic imitation of an ancient Greek word "mimema" which in itself contained the idea of "imitation", and the whole thing didn't even seem to be too fare fetched.
To my mind, Ellis's reply doesn't sweep it completely off the table
So I regard the concept as a hypothesis or a metaphor that might have some explanatory value. However, I am not convinced it has any ‘cash value' as a ‘scientific' term and to call a certain way of thinking a meme (perhaps another example might be the phlogiston theory), is not to endow that thinking with any particular qualities, other than that it occurs: some people think in this way, in the same way that some people buy a particular kind of dog food or wear a particular brand of jeans.
Anyway, if Ellis creates a new thread, I suppose that Jun will move this post there, along with all the other interesting stuff about shells, tin plates and parrots.
I have to agree, but am I to perceive a subtle dig here?
Really, I'll be happy to go on reading there.