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Gene and Meme: A unidirectional way - Essay Example

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According to Richard Dawkins Meme is the unit of cultural evolution while Gene is the unit of biological evolution. The alikeness is here that both are inherited by the living entity itself though the memetic copying are happened in only hominids, dolphins, and birds…
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Gene and Meme: A unidirectional way
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Discussion on Durham proposal May 21, 2006 Gene and Meme: A unidirectional way

According to Richard Dawkins Meme is the unit of cultural evolution while Gene is the unit of biological evolution. The alikeness is here that both are inherited by the living entity itself though the memetic copying are happened in only hominids, dolphins, and birds. As the birds, learn to sing imitating other. The main fact is that somehow the culture, language, philosophy, theories, hem-lines, tunes, religion all are transmitted one generation to another by meme replication. As example Languages are like viruses, which infect brain to brain.
Cross-cultural similarity in recognition of universal emotions like anger, disgust, fear, joy, sadness, or surprise are by some means identical around the world. According to www.pierce.ctc.edu cross-cultural similarity also found for appraisal dimensions like pleasant vs. unpleasant, expected vs. unexpected, fair vs. unfair etc. When a innate blind baby smile in proper cause the display rule differ by culture and gender but not the smile itself.
Now if we discuss about the effect of social and cultural effect over gene then we must know both are influenced by the environment. As the matter of consequence the people of mountain areas are physically tough while their counter parts reside in plain land are not so much. Their cultures also differ broadly. The occupational aspects are different, food habit, clothing, medical techniques all are poles apart. So the acceptance with weather, minerals intake, lactose tolerance all are in a long term revealed as 'adaptation' definitely droved by natural selection. Nowadays modern medical methods changes antibiotics and parasite resistance that somehow tilt the natural balance and taking contraceptive disturbs natural birth rate.
Advance animals already have the complex physiological and behavioural regularity. Extension of this regularity ultimately form the "population approach" or evolution. It may be clarify by the concept of dominant trend in biological evolution. The 'evolution' can undergoes by two methods.
It may happens due to (1) "differential fitness of the types in
the local environment" or (2) "due to natural selection and
"random" variation." Selection could be expressed by the equation:
pf = SUMf pft
(Harms William, Cultural Evolution And The Variable Phenotype http://billharms.home.comcast.net ) If frequency is zero here represented in the population which is impossible by selection alone. So the Random variation is proved to come in 'evolution'. It follows more Darwin theory than Lamarckian one.
As both evolution is for betterment then those meme actually persist or get enhanced all have high genetic fitness. Cultural incest taboos reinforce genetic advantages of out-breeding. So the marriage like customs are popular worldwide since the ancient days. The memes make people happier retain more and more days.
Just beside it is also been found that meme popularity has no impact upon genetic fitness sometimes. Some habits may be silly stay with us without any social or evolutionary impact.
Again some popular meme have low genetic fitness even harmful for enrichment of genetic mutation. Cigarette smoking, drug use, taking contraceptive, abortion are increasing day by day in spite of its dodgy future impact. Even it is very much essentially related in the field of our contemporary world without tranquility and symbiotic rule of mother nature.
Now it have to discuss in what context Durham found that opposition is rare. He mentioned as 'genes hold culture on a leash'.
Rationally genetic selection give birth the primary values like parental care. Maternal solicitude comes from this as secondary value. So use of contraceptive and abortion cannot be a persisting option for human race. Primary and secondary values are congruence units. But when it clash always winner is the primary one as it directly comes from genetic permission. He also point out that increasing the number of nerve cells and bigger brain is a very long term process and that's why expensive development. So evolution suppose to choice the best allomeme as natural rule. It is had been finalised that when individual opposes one meme it must be goes out from the way of advancement of memetic evolution.
So it is very much clear that according to Durham social and cultural evolution must follow the route of natural selection and whatever may be the bad meme comes into play in society, nature will lash it out.
Work cited:
Meme, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meme
http://billharms.home.comcast.net Read More
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