Re: virus: Meta

Ken Pantheists (
Tue, 30 Jul 1996 12:39:41 -0700

KMO wrote:
> Ken Pantheists wrote:
> >When you really think about it, you can't label all the memes that exert
> >selection pressure on other memes-- because they need the counter meme
> >to be interpreted as pressure exerting.
> What do you mean by 'counter-meme' here?

The one meme that offers resistance to the meme you hold.

> >A meme will exert pressure only
> >in an environment of memes that exert similar pressure.
> Could you unpack this a bit?

If you are a non-smoker your non-smokingness will show only when
somebody lights up and blows smoke in your face.

> >A racism meme
> >only exerts pressure in an environment of racial tension.
> It seems that a pervasive racism meme would generate racial tension in the
> environment.

I wasn't very clear with this statement. Let's try again.

A racIST meme will simply exist as long as there is an abstract,
scapegoat-like figure or symbol for it to refer to. The racist meme will
have to exert pressure once the abstract scapegoat begins to generate
counter memes. Once the "scapegoated" group has sufficient power and
resources to do this the two sets of memes battle it out. The memes
themselves are not pressure exerting unless they are in an environment
that offers resistance to them.

Ken Pantheists                          
Virus Theatre           
TooBa Physical Theatre Centre