Re: virus: Meme-Virus comparison

Duane Daniel Hewitt (
Thu, 11 May 1995 16:43:44 -0600 (MDT)

On Thu, 11 May 1995, David McFadzean wrote:

> I would say that a single copy of a meme is limited to a single host. When
> it spreads to other people, there are multiple copies of the meme. How about
> these analogs:
> meme = genome
> genomeme = gene
> phenomeme = organism

To me it seems that multiple meme complexes make up the equivalent of the
genome (Menome?). Memes themselves can range in complexity from an
advertising jingle to Relativity. Even though they may interact within
the organism they can be transmitted separately to new hosts. I would
equate the phenomeme to the observed behaviour of the organism. I agreee
that the genomeme would correspond to the genotype.

> The genomeme is a pattern in the host's nervous system (mostly chemical
> and energy distrubutions but may be partly physical in the case of hard-
> wired instincts). The phenomeme is the effect the pattern has on the
> host's behaviour. Given that, is it more correct to say the genomeme
> controls the host's behaviour or the phenomeme?

The phenomeme is the result of the combination of several of the host's
genomemes resulting in the host's behaviour. This is similar to
phenotypes which are a result of multiple genes interacting.

Duane Hewitt