RE: menes or gemes? (was Re: virus: Martyrdom)

Eva-Lise Carlstrom (
Fri, 8 Nov 1996 20:31:05 -0800 (PST)

I understand the desire to talk about the grey area where behaviour is
shaped by both genes and memes (and, of course, natural laws), or where
the influences are not clearly understood. I would call this general area
of interest something like 'behaviour studies', and consider that
sufficiently expressive. But I don't find it coherent to attempt to come
up with a term parallel to 'gene' and 'meme' for an individual unit of
"something" in this area. Picture someone prsented with a glass of juice
which appears to be made of apples, oranges, or some combination of the
two, possibly with something else mixed in. It would not make sense to
announce that the fruits it was made of would be henceforth referred to as
'orples'. It would, however, make sense to continue to inquire what those
fruits in fact were, and refer to them as 'fruits' in the meantime
('transmissible behavioural influences/determiners').