Memetic Science: I-General Introduction

Journal of Ideas 1 (1):3-23 (1990)
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Memetic Science is the name of a new field that deals with the quantitativeanalysis of cultural transfer.The units of cultural transfer are entities called "memes". In a nutshell, memes are to cultural and mental constructs as genesare to biological organisms. Examplesof memesare ideas,tunes, fashions, and virtuallyany culturaland behavioral unit that gets copiedwitha certaindegree of fidelity. It is arguedthat the under standing of memes is of similar importance and consequence as the understanding of processes involving DNA and RNA in molecular biology.Thispaperpresentsa rigorousfoundation fordiscussion ofmemes and approaches to quantifying relevantaspects of memegenesis, inter action, mutation, growth,deathand spreadingprocesses. It is also argued inthispaper that recombinant memetics is possible incomplete analogy to recombinant DNA/ genetic engineering. Special attention is paid to memes in written modern English.
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