Memetics Books


This is a collection of books related to the topic of applications of memetics. The list is associated with my 2011 "Memetics" book - which is now available. For the main list of memetics books, see here.

Memetics: Memes and the Science of Cultural Evolution by Tim Tyler (2011)
Memetics is the name commonly given to the study of memes - a term originally coined by Richard Dawkins to describe small inherited elements of human culture. Memes are the cultural equivalent of DNA genes - and memetics is the cultural equivalent of genetics. Memes have become ubiquitous in the modern world - but there has been relatively little proper scientific study of how they arise, spread and change - apparently due to turf wars within the social sciences and misguided resistance to Darwinian explanations being applied to human behaviour. However, with the modern explosion of internet memes, I think this is bound to change. With memes penetrating into every mass media channel, and with major companies riding on their coat tails for marketing purposes, social scientists will surely not be able to keep the subject at arm's length for much longer. This will be good - because an understanding of memes is important. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
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ImageTitle, author, date and description
Evolutionary Epistemology
Science as a Process: An Evolutionary Account of the Social and Conceptual Development of Science by David L. Hull (1988)
By far the most professional and thorough case in favour of an evolutionary philosophy of science ever to have been made. It contains excellent short histories of evolutionary biology and of systematics (the science of classifying living things); an important and original account of modern systematic controversy; a counter-attack against the philosophical critics of evolutionary philosophy; social-psychological evidence, collected by Hull himself, to show that science does have the character demanded by his philosophy; and a philosophical analysis of evolution which is general enough to apply to both biological and historical change. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Science and Selection: Essays on Biological Evolution and the Philosophy of Science by David L. Hull (2001)
One way to understand science is as a selection process. David Hull, one of the dominant figures in contemporary philosophy of science, sets out in this volume a general analysis of this selection process that applies equally to biological evolution, the reaction of the immune system to antigens, operant learning, and social and conceptual change in science. Science and Selection brings together many of Hull's most important essays on selection (some never before published) in one accessible volume. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Metaphysics of Evolution by David L. Hull (1990)
Contents: On Human Nature, Charles Darwin and Nineteenth Century Philosophies of Science, Plancks Principles, Darwin and the Nature of Science, The Ontological Status of Species As Evolutionary Units, Individuality and Selection, Genealogical Actors in Ecological Roles, Consistency and Monophyly, Central Subjects and Historical Narratives, In Defense of Presentism, Conceptual Evolution and The Eye of the Octopus, Altruism in Science, A Sociobiological Model of Cooperative Behavior Among Scientists, Sociobiology Scientific Bandwagon or Traveling Medicine Show?, Sociobiology Another New Synthesis, Karl Popper and Platos Metaphors, and Cladistic Theory Hypotheses That Blur and Grow. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Selection Theory and Social Construction: The Evolutionary Naturalistic Epistemology of Donald T. Campbell by Cecilia M. Heyes and David L. Hull (2000)
Top scholars examine the work of Donald T. Campbell, one of the first to emphasize the social structure of science. In his long career, Donald T. Campbell made important contributions to social psychology, anthropology, sociology, education, science studies, and epistemology. In this anthology, the authors concentrate on his epistemology, in particular his evolutionary, naturalistic epistemology. The four philosophers, two psychologists, a sociologist, and specialists in science studies and education discuss Campbell's contributions, explaining and criticizing them in a comprehensive way. Campbell and his ideas are treated in a strikingly new light-Campbell enters the new millennium. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Objective Knowledge: An Evolutionary Approach by Karl R. Popper (1972)
The essays in this volume represent an approach to human knowledge that has had a profound influence on many recent thinkers. Popper breaks with a traditional commonsense theory of knowledge that can be traced back to Aristotle. A realist and fallibilist, he argues closely and in simple language that scientific knowledge, once stated in human language, is no longer part of ourselves but a separate entity that grows through critical selection. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Issues in Evolutionary Epistemology (Suny Series in Philosophy and Biology) by Kai Hahlweg (Author), C. A. Hooker (Editor) (1989)
This book is based on the proceedings of a conference held near Newcastle (Australia) in 1987. Evolutionary epistemology applies the principle of natural selection to scientific theories and to knowledge generally. It is concerned with problem-solving and error elimination under various forms of selective pressure including the tests of logic and empirical evidence. This is a very subversive approach compared with most schools of thought in philosophy which are essentially conservative in their preoccupation with the justification of beliefs or the analysis of linguistic usage and the explication of concepts. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Epistemology, Rationality, and the Sociology of Knowledge by Gerard Radnitzky, W. W. Bartley and Karl Popper (Editors) (1993)
This collection of essays in support of the theory of evolutionary epistemology includes articles by Karl Popper, Peter Munz and Gerhard Vollmer. This volume attempts to show how an evolutionary and non-justificational approach affects the sociology of knowledge. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Kuhn's Evolutionary Social Epistemology by K. Brad Wray (2011)
Kuhn's Structure of Scientific Revolutions (1962) has been enduringly influential in philosophy of science, challenging many common presuppositions about the nature of science and the growth of scientific knowledge. However, philosophers have misunderstood Kuhn's view, treating him as a relativist or social constructionist. In this book, Brad Wray argues that Kuhn provides a useful framework for developing an epistemology of science that takes account of the constructive role that social factors play in scientific inquiry. He examines the core concepts of Structure and explains the main characteristics of both Kuhn's evolutionary epistemology and his social epistemology, relating Structure to Kuhn's developed view presented in his later writings. The discussion includes analyses of the Copernican revolution in astronomy and the plate tectonics revolution in geology. The book will be useful for scholars working in science studies, sociologists and historians of science as well as philosophers of science. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Learning, Development and Culture: Essays in Evolutionary Epistemology by Henry Plotkin (1982)
. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Epistemology, Language and Culture: A Non-Adaptationist, Systems Theoretical Approach by Nathalie Gontier (Editor), Jean Paul van Bendegem (Editor), Diederik Aerts (Editor) (2010)
For the first time in history, scholars working on language and culture from within an evolutionary epistemological framework, and thereby emphasizing complementary or deviating theories of the Modern Synthesis, were brought together. Of course there have been excellent conferences on Evolutionary Epistemology in the past, as well as numerous conferences on the topics of Language and Culture. However, until now these disciplines had not been brought together into one all-encompassing conference. Moreover, previously there never had been such stress on alternative and complementary theories of the Modern Synthesis. Today we know that natural selection and evolution are far from synonymous and that they do not explain isomorphic phenomena in the world. ‘Taking Darwin seriously’ is the way to go, but today the time has come to take alternative and complementary theories that developed after the Modern Synthesis, equally seriously, and, furthermore, to examine how language and culture can merit from these diverse disciplines. As this volume will make clear, a specific inter- and transdisciplinary approach is one of the next crucial steps that needs to be taken, if we ever want to unravel the secrets of phenomena such as language and culture. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Archaeology
Genes, Memes and Human History: Darwinian Archaeology and Cultural Evolution by Stephen Shennan (2003)
What is the history of human populations? How are cultural traditions maintained and changed over time? Why did people destroy their environments in the past and were they ever conservationists? What led to the emergence of marked social inequalities? These are some of the questions that this text addresses and answers, in an application of neo-Darwinian evolutionary ideas to the human past. Stephen Shennan opens with the study of human behaviour, as acted upon by natural selection, and goes on to demonstrate that the same ideas can be applied to human societies, not just through the genes but through what Richard Dawkins has called 'memes', units of cultural information which are passed on in our second inheritance system, culture. The book ranges from life history theory to game theory, and from the origins of farming to the collapse of societies. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Darwinian Archaeologies by Herbert D.G. Maschner and Stephen Shennan (2000)
This unique work explores the fundamental importance of Darwinian theory to archaeology. Contributors describe the myriad of approaches that archaeologists have taken while investigating prehistory through a Darwinian paradigm. In addition, they provide an important theoretical and methodological foundation for the current state of the field. Chapters are divided into three sections examining cultural and behavioral selection; various forms of dual inheritance and kin-selection; and archaeological impacts of evolutionary psychology, cognitive psychology, and the evolution of mental adaptations. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Rediscovering Darwin: Evolutionary Theory and Archeological Explanation by Michael Barton, Geoffrey A. Clark and Douglas B. Bamforth (1996)
Archeological Papers of the American Anthropological Association No. 7. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary and Interpretive Archaeologies: A Dialogue by Ethan Cochrane (Editor) and Andrew Gardner (Editor) (1996)
This collection of original articles compares various key archaeological topics—agency, violence, social groups, diffusion—from evolutionary and interpretive perspectives. These two strands represent the major current theoretical poles in the discipline. By comparing and contrasting the insights they provide into major archaeological themes, this volume demonstrates the importance of theoretical frameworks in archaeological interpretations. Chapter authors discuss relevant Darwinian or interpretive theory with short archaeological and anthropological case studies to illustrate the substantive conclusions produced. The book will advance debate and contribute to a better understanding of the goals and research strategies that comprise these distinct research traditions. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary historical and sociological studies
War and Peace and War: The Rise and Fall of Empires by Peter Turchin (2007)
Ranging freely from the founding of Rome to 17th-century North America, this provocative essay in cliodynamics (the study of processes that change with time) searches for scientific regularities that underlie history. Ecologist and mathematician Turchin grounds his theory of preindustrial empires in the Arabic concept of asabiya, meaning a society's capacity for collective action. Empires germinate, he contends, along meta-ethnic frontiers where conflict between starkly alien peoples—Roman farmers vs. Celtic tribesmen in the fifth and sixth centuries B.C., say—fosters the social solidarity and discipline that empire building requires. Success, he continues, leads inexorably to decline: stability and prosperity produce overpopulation and a Malthusian crisis in which the struggle for scarce resources undermines social solidarity and triggers imperial collapse. Turchin's straining for scientific exactitude occasionally overreaches, yielding a proliferation of historical cycles of fuzzy periodicity, riddled with fudge factors like mathematical chaos. Still, Turchin's focus on social cooperation as the key to history is a fruitful one, and his ideas generate many fascinating discussions of a wide variety of historical episodes, rendered in lucid, vigorous prose. The result, much in the vein of Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel, is a stimulating revisionist overview of world history. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Secular Cycles by Peter Turchin and Sergey A. Nefedov (2009)
Many historical processes exhibit recurrent patterns of change. Century-long periods of population expansion come before long periods of stagnation and decline; the dynamics of prices mirror population oscillations; and states go through strong expansionist phases followed by periods of state failure, endemic sociopolitical instability, and territorial loss. Peter Turchin and Sergey Nefedov explore the dynamics and causal connections between such demographic, economic, and political variables in agrarian societies and offer detailed explanations for these long-term oscillations - what the authors call "secular cycles". Secular Cycles elaborates and expands upon the demographic-structural theory first advanced by Jack Goldstone, which provides an explanation of long-term oscillations. This book tests that theory's specific and quantitative predictions by tracing the dynamics of population numbers, prices and real wages, elite numbers and incomes, state finances, and sociopolitical instability. Turchin and Nefedov study societies in England, France, and Russia during the medieval and early modern periods, and look back at the Roman Republic and Empire. Incorporating theoretical and quantitative history, the authors examine a specific model of historical change and, more generally, investigate the utility of the dynamical systems approach in historical applications. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Linguistics
Selfish Sounds and Linguistic Evolution: A Darwinian Approach to Language Change by Nikolaus Ritt (2004)
This new perspective on language change looks at a number of developments in the history of sounds and words and explains them in terms of Darwin's evolutionary theory. Nikolaus Ritt demonstrates how the constituents of language can be regarded as mental patterns, or 'memes', which copy themselves from one brain to another when communication and language acquisition occur. Challenging established models of linguistic competence, Ritt's controversial approach will stimulate debate among evolutionary biologists, cognitive scientists and linguists. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Harnessed: How Language and Music Mimicked Nature and Transformed Ape to Man by Mark Changizi (2011)
The scientific consensus is that our ability to understand human speech has evolved over hundreds of thousands of years. After all, there are whole portions of the brain devoted to human speech. We learn to understand speech before we can even walk, and can seamlessly absorb enormous amounts of information simply by hearing it. Surely we evolved this capability over thousands of generations. Or did we? Portions of the human brain are also devoted to reading. Children learn to read at a very young age and can seamlessly absorb information even more quickly through reading than through hearing. We know that we didn’t evolve to read because reading is only a few thousand years old. In Harnessed, cognitive scientist Mark Changizi demonstrates that human speech has been very specifically “designed” to harness the sounds of nature, sounds we’ve evolved over millions of years to readily understand. Long before humans evolved, mammals have learned to interpret the sounds of nature to understand both threats and opportunities. Our speech — regardless of language — is very clearly based on the sounds of nature. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Variation, Selection, Development: Probing the Evolutionary Model of Language Change by Eckardt, Regine, Regine Eckardt, Gerhard Jager and Tonjes Veenstra (2008)
Can language change be modelled as an evolutionary process? Can notions like variation, selection and competition be fruitfully applied to facts of language development? The present volume ties together various strands of linguistic research which can bring us towards an answer to these questions. In one of the youngest and rapidly growing areas of linguistic research, mathematical models and simulations of competition based developments have been applied to instances of language change. By matching the predicted and observed developmental trends, researchers gauge existing models to the needs of linguistic applications and evaluate the fruitfulness of evolutionary models in linguistics. The present volume confronts these studies with more empirically-based studies in creolization and historical language change which bear on key concepts of evolutionary models. What does it mean for a linguistic construction to survive its competitors? How do the interacting factors in phases of creolization differ from those in ordinary language change, and how - consequently - might Creole languages differ structurally from older languages? Some of the authors, finally, also address the question how different aspects of our linguistic competence tie in with our more elementary cognitive capacities.
Language Evolution (Studies in the Evolution of Language) by Morten H. Christiansen and Simon Kirby (Editors) (2003)
The leading scholars in the rapidly growing field of language evolution give readable accounts of their theories on the origins of language and reflect on the most important current issues and debates. As well as providing a guide to their own published research in this area they highlight what they see as the most relevant research of others. The authors come from a wide range of disciplines involved in language evolution including linguistics, cognitive science, computational science, primatology, and archaeology. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Linguistics and Evolutionary Theory: Three Essays by Konrad Koerner (Editor) (1984)
Three essays by August Schleicher, Ernst Haeckel and Wilhelm Bleek View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Evolution of Human Language: Scenarios, Principles, and Cultural Dynamics by Wolfgang Wildgen (2004)
Chapter 1; Introduction 1; Chapter 2; Basic scenarios and forces in the evolution of human language 5; 2.1 First scenario: Cognitive and physical predispositions for language 5; 2.2 Second scenario: Bottleneck situations and the rapid evolution of language 15 View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Religious Studies
The God Virus: How religion infects our lives and culture by Darrel W. Ray (2009)
What makes religion so powerful? How does it weave its way into our political system? Why do people believe and follow obvious religious charlatans? What makes people profess deep faith even as they act in ways that betray that faith? What makes people blind to the irrationalities of their religion yet clearly see those of others? If these questions interest you, this book will give you the tools to understand religion and its power in you, your family and your culture. For thousands of years, religion has woven its way through societies and people as if it were part and parcel to that society or person. In large measure it was left unexplained and unchallenged, it simply existed. Those who attempted to challenge and expose religion were often persecuted, excommunicated, shunned, or even executed. It could be fatal to explain that which the church, priest or imam said was unexplainable. Before the germ, viral and parasite theory of disease, physicians had no tools to understand disease and its propagation. Priests told people disease was a result of sin, Satan, evil spirits, etc. With the discovery of microbial actors, scientists gained new tools to study how it spreads. They could study infection strategies, immunity, epidemiology and much more. Suddenly the terrible diseases of the past were understandable. The plagues of Europe, yellow fever, small pox, pneumonia, tuberculosis, syphilis, etc. were now removed from the divine and placed squarely in the natural world. This book owes a great deal to Richard Dawkins concept of viruses of the mind, but it seeks to go a step further to personalize the concept of religion as a virus and show how these revolutionary ideas work in everyday life. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Darwin's Cathedral: Evolution, Religion, and the Nature of Society by David Sloan Wilson (2003)
One of the great intellectual battles of modern times is between evolution and religion. Until now, they have been considered completely irreconcilable theories of origin and existence. David Sloan Wilson's Darwin's Cathedral takes the radical step of joining the two, in the process proposing an evolutionary theory of religion that shakes both evolutionary biology and social theory at their foundations. The key, argues Wilson, is to think of society as an organism, an old idea that has received new life based on recent developments in evolutionary biology. If society is an organism, can we then think of morality and religion as biologically and culturally evolved adaptations that enable human groups to function as single units rather than mere collections of individuals? Wilson brings a variety of evidence to bear on this question, from both the biological and social sciences. From Calvinism in sixteenth-century Geneva to Balinese water temples, from hunter-gatherer societies to urban America, Wilson demonstrates how religions have enabled people to achieve by collective action what they never could do alone. He also includes a chapter considering forgiveness from an evolutionary perspective and concludes by discussing how all social organizations, including science, could benefit by incorporating elements of religion. Religious believers often compare their communities to single organisms and even to insect colonies. Astoundingly, Wilson shows that they might be literally correct. Intended for any educated reader, Darwin's Cathedral will change forever the way we view the relations among evolution, religion, and human society. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Is God a Virus?: Genes, Culture and Religion by John Bowker (1995)
This title examines the argument that belief in God is a virus infecting human minds, with damaging results. This claim is tested in the context of work both in genetics and theories of gene-culture coevolution. It suggests ways in which interaction between genes and culture may be interpreted. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Religovirology: Meme Mechanics, Virology of Religion, and Refutation of Supernaturalism by Eric Bright (2009)
It is all about modeling. This time the model is invented to explain religion. One way of studying religions is to refer to the theological literature. The other way is studying religion as the subject of another science. In this context, we can scrutinize religion and reveal its internal mechanics in a meta-language. To do so, first we need to know why religion can be studied scientifically and why it is not untouchable. Trying to be as objective as human beings can be, we begin to see that religions behave in a way very familiar to biologists. There are organisms that behave in the same way, namely viruses. The similarity was first noted by Richard Dawkins in about 1976. I try to elaborate on that and see if a new science can emerge from Dawkins' 'dangerous idea.' Should that work, then we have started a new era of the demystification of religion. The resulting attempts will give birth to what I call Religovirology (read View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Religion Virus: Why We Believe in God: An Evolutionist Explains Religion's Incredible Hold on Humanity by Craig A. James (2010)
Why do some beliefs become extinct while others adapt and flourish? James shows us how genetic evolution and cultural evolution, though operating at different rates, are one and the same. Recent science has gone a long way toward explaining the origin of religious belief in evolutionary terms, but Craig James has cracked open the mystery of its tenacity. Religion does not exist for us, it exists for its own sake. Like a selfish gene or a parasite, the religion virus catches a free ride in the minds of our species, infecting our history and culture. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins (2008)
Richard Dawkins, in The God Delusion, tells of his exasperation with colleagues who try to play both sides of the street: looking to science for justification of their religious convictions while evading the most difficult implications - the existence of a prime mover sophisticated enough to create and run the universe, 'to say nothing of mind reading millions of humans simultaneously.' Such an entity, he argues, would have to be extremely complex, raising the question of how it came into existence, how it communicates - through spiritons! - and where it resides. Dawkins is frequently dismissed as a bully, but he is only putting theological doctrines to the same kind of scrutiny that any scientific theory must withstand. No one who has witnessed the merciless dissection of a new paper in physics would describe the atmosphere as overly polite. Available online. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon by Daniel C. Dennett (2007)
In his characteristically provocative fashion, Dennett, author of Darwin's Dangerous Idea and director of the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University, calls for a scientific, rational examination of religion that will lead us to understand what purpose religion serves in our culture. Much like E.O. Wilson (In Search of Nature), Robert Wright (The Moral Animal), and Richard Dawkins (The Selfish Gene), Dennett explores religion as a cultural phenomenon governed by the processes of evolution and natural selection. Religion survives because it has some kind of beneficial role in human life, yet Dennett argues that it has also played a maleficent role. He elegantly pleads for religions to engage in empirical self-examination to protect future generations from the ignorance so often fostered by religion hiding behind doctrinal smoke screens. Has an appendix on memes.' View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Evolution of God by Robert Wright (2010)
Straddling popular science, ancient history, and theology, this ambitious work sets out to resolve not only the clash of civilizations between the Judeo-Christian West and the Muslim world but also the clash between science and religion. Tracking the continual transformation of faith from the Stone Age to the Information Age, Wright, a self-described materialist, best known for his work on evolutionary psychology, free trade, and game theory, postulates that religious world views are becoming more open, compassionate, and synthesized. Occasionally, his prescriptions can seem obvious—for instance, that members of the different Abrahamic faiths should think of their religions as “having been involved, all along, in the same undertaking.” But his core argument, that religion is getting “better” with each passing aeon, is enthralling. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Religion Explained: the evolutionary origins of religious thought by Pascal Boyer (2002)
Many of our questions about religion, says renowned anthropologist Pascal Boyer, are no longer mysteries. We are beginning to know how to answer questions such as "Why do people have religion?" Using findings from anthropology, cognitive science, linguistics, and evolutionary biology, Religion Explained shows how this aspect of human consciousness is increasingly admissible to coherent, naturalistic explanation. This brilliant and controversial book gives readers the first scientific explanation for what religious feeling is really about, what it consists of, and where it comes from. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Faith Instinct: How Religion Evolved and Why It Endures by Nicholas Wade (2002)
Wade deftly explores the evolutionary basis of religion. He draws on archeology, social science and natural science as he vigorously shows that the instinct for religious behavior is an evolved part of human nature because, like other human social traits that have evolved over many thousands of years, the practice of religion conferred a decided survival advantage to those who practiced it. Natural selection operates according to principles of survival and reproduction of offspring with heritable traits. Many of the social aspects of religious behavior offer advantages—such as internal cohesion—that lead to a society's members having more surviving children. More importantly, since religions have evolved as their societies have developed, is it possible, Wade asks, for religions to be reworked so that as many people as possible can exercise their innate religious instincts to their own and society's benefits? Sure to be controversial for its reduction of religion to a product of natural selection, Wade's study compels us to reconsider the role of evolution in shaping even our most sacred human creations. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Economics
Economics and Evolution: Bringing Life Back into Economics by Geoffrey Martin Hodgson (1997)
Economic theory is currently at a crossroads, where many leading mainstream economists are calling for a more realistic and practical orientation for economic science. Indeed, many are suggesting that economics should be reconstructed on evolutionary lines. This book is about the application to economics of evolutionary ideas from biology. It is not about selfish genes or determination of our behavior by genetic code. The idea that evolution supports a laissez-faire policy is rebutted. The conception of evolution as progress toward greater perfection, along with the competitive individualism sometimes inferred from the notion of the 'survival of the fittest,' is found to be problematic. Hodgson explores the ambiguities inherent in biology and the problems involved in applying ideas of past economic thinkers - including Malthus, Smith, Marx, Marshall, Veblen, Schumpeter, and Hayek - and argues that the new evolutionary economics can learn much from the many differing conceptions of organic evolution. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolution and Institutions: On Evolutionary Economics and the Evolution of Economics by Geoffrey Martin Hodgson (1999)
This study of the future of economics as a viable discipline analyses some attempts to redirect theoretical economics to real world issues. It proposes a move away from mathematical formulizations and greater tolerance for the possibilitiy of learning from other sciences, especially biology.
The Evolution of Institutional Economics by Geoffrey Martin Hodgson (2004)
Reconstructs the history of institutional economics in a quest for insights into theoretical problems of agency, structure, emergence, and social evolution.
Economics in the Shadows of Darwin and Marx: Essays on Institutional and Evolutionary Themes by Geoffrey Martin Hodgson (2007)
This book examines the legacies of these two giants of thought for the social sciences in the twenty-first century. Darwin and Marx stand out as the supreme theorists of structural change in complex living systems. Yet their analytical approaches are very different, and the idea that Darwinism has application to the social sciences is not widely appreciated. This collection of essays establishes the importance of Darwinism for economics and other social sciences, and compares the Darwinian legacy with that of Marx.Critical realism is just one of the tendencies within economics influenced by Marxism that is dissected here. The final part of the book adopts a Darwinian evolutionary approach to the analysis of institutions and routines. Geoffrey Hodgson's book will be warmly welcomed and received by evolutionary and institutional economists, methodologists of economics and other social sciences, heterodox economists as well as other social scientists including economic sociologists, organisation scientists and political scientists. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Darwin Economy: Liberty, Competition, and the Common Good by Robert Frank (2011)
Who was the greater economist--Adam Smith or Charles Darwin? The question seems absurd. Darwin, after all, was a naturalist, not an economist. But Robert Frank, New York Times economics columnist and best-selling author of The Economic Naturalist, predicts that within the next century Darwin will unseat Smith as the intellectual founder of economics. The reason, Frank argues, is that Darwin's understanding of competition describes economic reality far more accurately than Smith's. And the consequences of this fact are profound. Indeed, the failure to recognize that we live in Darwin's world rather than Smith's is putting us all at risk by preventing us from seeing that competition alone will not solve our problems. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Evolutionary Foundations of Economics by Kurt Dopfer (2000)
Evolutionary economics is attracting increasing interest as a way of understanding the processes which generate particular forms of economic activities and structures. This collection brings together economists who are at the forefront of this new field of enquiry to provide the most comprehensive and authoritative survey available. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Darwinism and Evolutionary Economics by John Laurent and John Nightingale (Editors) (2001)
Darwinism is fast becoming an orthodoxy of modern thought, a framework within which a wide range of knowledge communities conduct their discourse. Ever since its formation, Darwinism theory has experienced a close, though not always comfortable, association with economics. Evolutionary economists now appear to show little concern for the consistency of knowledge in their embrace of Darwinism. This volume brings together contributions from authors who, building on Darwin's own insights and on developments in evolutionary theory, offer challenging views on how economics can use evolutionary ideas effectively. This collection of critical essays offers an examination of the application of Darwinian theory to economic thought, and should appeal to evolutionary economists and all those with an interest in Darwin, innovation and evolutionary science. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
An Evolutionary Theory of Economic Change by Richard R. Nelson and Sidney G. Winter (1985)
This book contains the most sustained and serious attack on mainstream, neoclassical economics in more than forty years. Nelson and Winter focus their critique on the basic question of how firms and industries change overtime. They marshal significant objections to the fundamental neoclassical assumptions of profit maximization and market equilibrium, which they find ineffective in the analysis of technological innovation and the dynamics of competition among firms. To replace these assumptions, they borrow from biology the concept of natural selection to construct a precise and detailed evolutionary theory of business behavior. They grant that films are motivated by profit and engage in search for ways of improving profits, but they do not consider them to be profit maximizing. Likewise, they emphasize the tendency for the more profitable firms to drive the less profitable ones out of business, but they do not focus their analysis on hypothetical states of industry equilibrium. The results of their new paradigm and analytical framework are impressive. Not only have they been able to develop more coherent and powerful models of competitive firm dynamics under conditions of growth and technological change, but their approach is compatible with findings in psychology and other social sciences. Finally, their work has important implications for welfare economics and for government policy toward industry. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Contagion: The Financial Epidemic That is Sweeping the Global Economy... and How to Protect Yourself from It by John R. Talbott (2000)
ough times are here, and author John Talbott-who accurately predicted the technology stock collapse as well as the recent housing, mortgage, and financial crises-argues that the coming global recession will be unlike anything we've ever seen. In Contagion, Talbott turns his attention to this crisis and offers insights on what can be done to navigate such treacherous terrain. Talbott sets the stage by discussing how government borrowing and spending on the war, healthcare, Social Security, and corporate giveaways combined with dramatic increases in personal spending, fueled by credit card and mortgage debt, have funded unsustainable levels of personal and government consumption. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
A Decade of Delusions: From Speculative Contagion to the Great Recession by Frank K. Martin and John C. Bogle (2000)
When the dot-com and real estate bubbles of the 1990s and 2000s burst, few were spared the financial fallout. So, how did an investment advisory firm located in Elkhart, Indiana—one of the cities hit hardest by the economic downturns—not only survive, but also thrive during the highly contagious speculative pandemics. By remaining rational. In A Decade of Delusions: From Speculative Contagion to the Great Recession, Frank Martin founder of Elkhart, Indiana's Martin Capital Management offers a riveting and real-time insider's look at the two bubbles, and reflects on how investors can remain rational even when markets are anything but. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Thorstein Veblen and the Enrichment of Evolutionary Naturalism by Rick Tilman (2007)
One of America s most influential social critics, Thorstein Veblen authored works deeply rooted in evolutionary biology and American philosophical naturalism. Now one of today s preeminent Veblen scholars ranges widely over the man s writings to show how evolutionary naturalism underlies his social theory and criticism, shapes his satire, and binds his work together. Veblen s evolutionary naturalism, with its unflattering evaluation of America s self-selected special place in the international arena, casts doubt on today s foreign interventions, and it also provides a much-needed antidote to the resurgence of creationist thought in American culture. Rick Tilman shows that Veblen s ideas are still valuable to contemporary social scientists indeed, that his method of analysis and values are sorely needed to help us avoid wasteful consumption, predation, and the persistence of religious superstition. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Adapt: Why Success Always Starts with Failure by Tim Harford (2011)
Makes a compelling and expertly informed case for why we need to embrace risk, failure, and experimentation in order to find great ideas that will change the world. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Creating Contagious Leadership by John Hersey (2003)
What if leadership in your organization was like a pot of boiling water? It begins as a pool of cool water. When you apply heat, one or two little bubbles (leaders) begin to appear. They multiply creating a leadership "bubble effect" of "hot molecules" modeling and passing on leadership qualities to others. John Hersey tells us why an environment full of Contagious Leaders is not pie-in-the-sky thinking, not complicated, not expensive and, above all, not an option. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
A Cooperative Species: Human Reciprocity and Its Evolution by Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis (2011)
Why do humans, uniquely among animals, cooperate in large numbers to advance projects for the common good? Contrary to the conventional wisdom in biology and economics, this generous and civic-minded behavior is widespread and cannot be explained simply by far-sighted self-interest or a desire to help close genealogical kin. In A Cooperative Species, Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis--pioneers in the new experimental and evolutionary science of human behavior--show that the central issue is not why selfish people act generously, but instead how genetic and cultural evolution has produced a species in which substantial numbers make sacrifices to uphold ethical norms and to help even total strangers. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Why Humans Cooperate: A Cultural and Evolutionary Explanation by Joseph Henrich and Natalie Henrich (2007)
Cooperation among humans is one of the keys to our great evolutionary success. Natalie and Joseph Henrich examine this phenomena with a unique fusion of theoretical work on the evolution of cooperation, ethnographic descriptions of social behavior, and a range of other experimental results. Their experimental and ethnographic data come from a small, insular group of middle-class Iraqi Christians called Chaldeans, living in metro Detroit, whom the Henrichs use as an example to show how kinship relations, ethnicity, and culturally transmitted traditions provide the key to explaining the evolution of cooperation over multiple generations. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Moral Sentiments and Material Interests: The Foundations of Cooperation in Economic Life by Herbert Gintis, Samuel Bowles, Robert Boyd and Ernst Fehr (2006)
Moral Sentiments and Material Interests presents an innovative synthesis of research in different disciplines to argue that cooperation stems not from the stereotypical selfish agent acting out of disguised self-interest but from the presence of 'strong reciprocators' in a social group.Presenting an overview of research in economics, anthropology, evolutionary and human biology, social psychology, and sociology, the book deals with both the theoretical foundations and the policy implications of this explanation for cooperation. Chapter authors in the remaining parts of the book discuss the behavioral ecology of cooperation in humans and nonhuman primates, modeling and testing strong reciprocity in economic scenarios, and reciprocity and social policy. The evidence for strong reciprocity in the book includes experiments using the famous Ultimatum Game (in which two players must agree on how to split a certain amount of money or they both get nothing.) View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Foundations of Human Sociality: Economic Experiments and Ethnographic Evidence from Fifteen Small-Scale Societies by Joseph Henrich, Robert Boyd, Samuel Bowles, Colin Camerer, Ernst Fehr, Herbert Gintis (2000)
This path-breaking book addresses the nature of human sociality. By bringing together experimental and ethnographic data from fifteen different tribal societies, the contributors are able to explore the universality of human motives in economic decision-making, and the importance of social, institutional and cultural factors, in a manner that has been extremely rare in the social sciences. Its findings have far-reaching implications across the social sciences. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior by Elliott Sober and David Sloan Wilson (2000)
In Unto Others, philosopher Elliott Sober and biologist David Sloan Wilson bravely attempt to reconcile altruism, both evolutionary and psychological, with the scientific discoveries that seem to portray nature as red in tooth and claw. The first half of the book deals with the evolutionary objection to altruism. For altruistic behavior to be produced by natural selection, it must be possible for natural selection to act on groups - but conventional wisdom holds that group selection was conclusively debunked by George Williams in Adaptation and Natural Selection. Sober and Wilson nevertheless defend group selection, instructively reviewing the arguments against it and citing important work that relies on it. They then discuss group selection in human evolution, testing their conclusions against the anthropological literature. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Morality
The Evolution of Morality by Richard Joyce (2007)
Moral thinking pervades our practical lives, but where did this way of thinking come from, and what purpose does it serve? Is it to be explained by environmental pressures on our ancestors a million years ago, or is it a cultural invention of more recent origin? In The Evolution of Morality, Richard Joyce takes up these controversial questions, finding that the evidence supports an innate basis to human morality. As a moral philosopher, Joyce is interested in whether any implications follow from this hypothesis. Might the fact that the human brain has been biologically prepared by natural selection to engage in moral judgment serve in some sense to vindicate this way of thinking - staving off the threat of moral skepticism, or even undergirding some version of moral realism? Or if morality has an adaptive explanation in genetic terms - if it is, as Joyce writes, 'just something that helped our ancestors make more babies' - might such an explanation actually undermine morality's central role in our lives? He carefully examines both the evolutionary 'vindication of morality' and the evolutionary 'debunking of morality,' considering the skeptical view more seriously than have others who have treated the subject. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Science of Ethics by Leslie Stephen (2009)
The author's only purely philosophical work - an examination of the possibility that the morality of an individual was the result of the demands of the survival of a social being and not, as widely held at the time the outcome of rational calculation or an inexplicable intuition. The agnostic, he held, must place morality on a scientific basis, and this means that there must be nothing in his ethics that is outside the competence of scientific enquiry. Brought up on John Stuart Mill and profoundly influenced by Darwin, Stephen attempted to cut through what he impatiently dismissed as academic debates about morality by showing that moral beliefs were the result neither of excessively rational utilitarian calculation nor of mysterious intuition but of the demands of the social organism in its struggle for survival. Leslie Stephen was the first serious critic of the novel, and he was also editor of the great Dictionary of National Biography from its beginning in 1882 until 1891. In 1859 he was ordained a minister. As a tutor at Cambridge his philosophical readings led him to skepticism, and later he relinquished his holy orders. He wrote several essays defending his agnostic position. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary innovation
Innovation in Cultural Systems: Contributions from Evolutionary Anthropology (Vienna Series in Theoretical Biology) by Michael J. O'Brien and Stephen J. Shennan (2009)
Leading scholars offer a range of perspectives on the roles played by innovation in the evolution of human culture. Available online. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Where Good Ideas Come from: The Natural History of Innovation by Steven Johnson (2010)
This book suggests that new ideas emerge more easily from accidents or errors in research or in thinking processes, much as mutations occur in evolution, than they do from academic or monolithic thought processes where the proponents-such as in Religions or Politics where rigid beliefs and convictions fiercely guard their dogmas from the slightest possibility of 'error'. A fascinating theory well researched and carefully crafted. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Technological Innovation as an Evolutionary Process by John Ziman (2003)
Technological artefacts and biological organisms 'evolve' by very similar processes of blind variation and selective retention. This analogy is explored systematically, for the first time, by a team of international experts from evolutionary biology, history and sociology of science and technology, cognitive and computer science, economics, psychology, education, cultural anthropology and research management. Do technological 'memes' play the role of genes? In what sense are novel inventions 'blind'? Does the element of design make them 'Lamarckian' rather than 'Darwinian'? Is the recombination of ideas the essence of technological creativity? Can invention be simulated computationally? What are the entities that actually evolve - artefacts, ideas or organisations? These are only some of the many questions stimulated and partially answered by this powerful metaphor. With its practical demonstration of the explanatory potential of 'evolutionary reasoning' in a well-defined context, this book is a ground-breaking contribution to every discipline concerned with cultural change. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Diffusion of Innovations by Everett M. Rogers (2003)
In this renowned book, Everett M. Rogers, professor and chair of the Department of Communication & Journalism at the University of New Mexico, explains how new ideas spread via communication channels over time. Such innovations are initially perceived as uncertain and even risky. To overcome this uncertainty, most people seek out others like themselves who have already adopted the new idea. Thus the diffusion process consists of a few individuals who first adopt an innovation, then spread the word among their circle of acquaintances--a process which typically takes months or years. But there are exceptions: use of the Internet in the 1990s, for example, may have spread more rapidly than any other innovation in the history of humankind. Furthermore, the Internet is changing the very nature of diffusion by decreasing the importance of physical distance between people. The fifth edition addresses the spread of the Internet, and how it has transformed the way human beings communicate and adopt new ideas.
Technological evolution
The Nature of Technology: What It Is and How It Evolves by W. Brian Arthur (2009)
What is technology in its nature, in its deepest essence? Where does it come from? How does it evolve? With contagious enthusiasm, Arthur, an economics professor and a pioneer of complexity theory, tries to answer these and other questions in a style that is by turns sparkling and flat. Technology is self-creating, though it requires human agency to build it up and reproduce it. Yet technology evolves much like organisms evolve, and Arthur cannily applies Darwin's ideas to technologies and their growth. All technologies descend from earlier ones, and those that perform better and more efficiently than others are selected for future growth and development. But radical novelty in technology cannot be explained by this model of variation and selection, so Arthur argues that novel technologies arise by combination of existing technologies. For example, a hydroelectric power generator combines several main components - a reservoir to store water, an intake system, turbines driven by high-energy water flow, transformers to convert the power output to a higher voltage: groups of self-contained technologies - into a new technology. Arthur's arguments will likely alter the reader's way of thinking about technology and its relationship to humanity. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
What Technology Wants by Kevin Kelly (2010)
Verbalizing visceral feelings about technology, whether attraction or repulsion, Kelly explores the 'technium,' his term for the globalized, interconnected stage of technological development. Arguing that the processes creating the technium are akin to those of biological evolution, Kelly devotes the opening sections of his exposition to that analogy, maintaining that the technium exhibits a similar tendency toward self-organizing complexity. Having defined the technium, Kelly addresses its discontents, as expressed by the Unabomber (although Kelly admits to trepidation in taking seriously the antitechnology screeds of a murderer) and then as lived by the allegedly technophobic Amish. From his observations and discussions with some Amish people, Kelly extracts some precepts of their attitudes toward gadgets, suggesting folk in the secular world can benefit from the Amish approach of treating tools as servants of self and society rather than as out-of-control masters. Exploring ramifications of technology on human welfare and achievement, Kelly arrives at an optimistic outlook that will interest many, coming, as it does, from the former editor of Wired magazine. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Evolution of Technology by George Basalla (1989)
Presents an evolutionary theory of technological change based on recent scholarship in the history of technology and on relevant material drawn from economic history and anthropology. Challenges the popular notion that technological advances arise from the efforts of a few heroic individuals who produce a series of revolutionary inventions that owe little or nothing to the technological past. Therefore, the book's argument is shaped by analogies drawn selectively from the theory of organic evolution, and not from the theory and practice of political revolution. Three themes appear, with variations, throughout the study. The first is diversity: an acknowledgment of the vast numbers of different kinds of made things (artifacts) that long have been available to humanity. The second theme is necessity: the mistaken belief that humans are driven to invent new artifacts in order to meet basic biological needs such as food, shelter, and defense. And the third theme is technological evolution: an organic analogy that explains both the emergence of the novel artifacts and their subsequent selection by society for incorporation into its material life without invoking either biological necessity or technological process. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Technological Innovation as an Evolutionary Process by John Ziman (Editor) (2007)
Technological artefacts and biological organisms 'evolve' by very similar processes of blind variation and selective retention. This analogy is explored systematically, for the first time, by a team of international experts from evolutionary biology, history and sociology of science and technology, cognitive and computer science, economics, psychology, education, cultural anthropology and research management. Do technological 'memes' play the role of genes? In what sense are novel inventions 'blind'? Does the element of design make them 'Lamarckian' rather than 'Darwinian'? Is the recombination of ideas the essence of technological creativity? Can invention be simulated computationally? What are the entities that actually evolve - artefacts, ideas or organisations? These are only some of the many questions stimulated and partially answered by this powerful metaphor. With its practical demonstration of the explanatory potential of 'evolutionary reasoning' in a well-defined context, this book is a ground-breaking contribution to every discipline concerned with cultural change. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Techno-cultural Evolution: Cycles of Creation and Conflict by William McDonald Wallace (2007)
William McDonald Wallace contends that new technology drives cultural evolution much as mutations change our DNA. Knowing the process by which culture evolves, clarifies the origin of many of our current problems, both within and between cultures. The problem is that technology is now coming at us so fast that it is inducing 'circuit overload' in cultures all over the world, leading to conflict. 'Techno-Cultural Evolution' explains how this process works - and what it means for all of us. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Musicology
The Memetics of Music by Steven Jan (2007)
Richard Dawkins' formulation of the meme concept in his 1976 classic 'The Selfish Gene' has inspired three decades of work in what many see as the burgeoning science of memetics. Its underpinning theory proposes that human culture is composed of a multitude of particulate units, memes, which are analogous to the genes of biological transmission. These cultural replicators are transmitted by imitation between members of a community and are subject to mutational-evolutionary pressures over time. Despite Dawkins and several others using music in their exemplifications of what might constitute a meme, these formulations have generally been quite rudimentary, even naive. This study is the first musicologically-orientated attempt systematically to apply the theory of memetics to music. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Learning and Creativity
Origins of Genius: Darwinian Perspectives on Creativity by Dean Keith Simonton (1999)
In Simonton's bold formulation, creative genius is the ability to produce highly original ideas with staying power is based on a fundamentally Darwinian process that enhances the adaptive fitness of the individual and the human species. In a fascinating treatise leavened with candid descriptions by Einstein, Nietzsche, Mozart, Darwin, Poe, Linus Pauling and many others of their own creative processes, Simonton, a professor of psychology at UC-Davis, argues that creativity can be understood as a process akin to natural selection that leads to the survival of those ideas that prove their hardiness. If that sounds more like a quaint analogy than a real scientific theory, consider that, as Simonton explains, computer programs called 'genetic algorithms' that are modeled on Darwinian principles and feature randomly generated strings of ones and zeroes that reproduce 'sexually' (that is, each string exchanges a portion of its strand with a mate) are already solving real-world problems such as how to plan fiberoptic telecommunications networks, make forecasts in currency trading and improve oil exploration operations. Similar 'variation-selection' programs have generated original art, solved equations and composed jazz melodies. Besides providing his own mathematical model of creative productivity, which will interest specialists, Simonton explores how cultural evolution and environmental influences stimulate the emergence of genius, as well as the links between mental illness and creativity. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Evolutionary Marketing
Zarrella's Hierarchy of Contagiousness: The Science, Design, and Engineering of Contagious Ideas by Dan Zarrella (2011)
Want to learn how to maximize social media? When to do it, what words to use, who to tweet at? Look no further than Zarrella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness: The Science, Design and Engineering of Contagious Ideas. Social media master Dan Zarrella has amassed years of experience helping people negotiate the often mystical place of social media marketing. Now, he has condensed those well-tried ideas into this concise and conversational book. Zarrella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness demystifies and deconstructs how social media works, who it benefits and why we all depend upon it to help our good ideas spread.
The Facebook Marketing Book by Dan Zarrella and Alison Zarrella (2011)
How can Facebook help you promote your brand, products, and services? This book provides proven tactics that you can use right away to build your brand and engage prospective customers. With 500 million active users worldwide, Facebook offers a much larger audience than traditional media, but it's a new landscape loaded with unfamiliar challenges. The Facebook Marketing Book shows you how to make the most of the service while skirting not-so-obvious pitfalls along the way. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Social Media Marketing Book by Dan Zarrella (2009)
Are you looking to take advantage of social media for your business or organization? With easy-to-understand introductions to blogging, forums, opinion and review sites, and social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, this book will help you choose the best -- and avoid the worst -- of the social web's unique marketing opportunities.The Social Media Marketing Book guides you through the maze of communities, platforms, and social media tools so you can decide which ones to use, and how to use them most effectively. With an objective approach and clear, straightforward language, Dan Zarrella, aka 'The Social Media & Marketing Scientist' shows you how to plan and implement campaigns intelligently, and then measure results and track return on investment. Whether you're a seasoned pro or new to the social web, this book will take you beyond the jargon to social media marketing mastery. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Science of Marketing by Dan Zarrella (2012)
he book offers takeaways such as: Late in the day and week is when the most retweets occur. Explains why weekends are best for Facebook sharing and blog posts that lead to comments, while early mornings are best for emails and blog posting. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell (2006)
'The best way to understand the dramatic transformation of unknown books into bestsellers, or the rise of teenage smoking, or the phenomena of word of mouth or any number of the other mysterious changes that mark everyday life,' writes Malcolm Gladwell, 'is to think of them as epidemics. Ideas and products and messages and behaviors spread just like viruses do.' Although anyone familiar with the theory of memetics will recognize this concept, Gladwell's The Tipping Point has quite a few interesting twists on the subject. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Unleashing the Ideavirus by Seth Godin (2001)
In Unleashing the Ideavirus, Godin describes ways to set any viable commercial concept loose among those who are most likely to catch it - and then stand aside as these recipients become infected and pass it on to others who might do the same. 'The future belongs to marketers who establish a foundation and process where interested people can market to each other,' he writes. 'Ignite consumer networks and then get out of the way and let them talk.' Available online. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Guerrilla Creativity: Make Your Message Irresistible with the Power of Memes by Jay Conrad Levinson (2001)
Today, with more than four thousand marketing messages assailing consumers daily, it is more important than ever to create an original, appealing, and memorable message. Marketer extraordinaire Jay Conrad Levinson shows readers how to craft such messages using memes - simple symbols that represent complex ideas. Memes can be words, such as Lean Cuisine or 'Remember the Alamo,' or they can be images, such as the Red Cross or Betty Crocker. They can even be actions, like drenching a victorious coach with a barrelful of Gatorade. The best memes can propel a product or service to the pinnacle of success. As no other book has done before, Guerrilla Creativity shows how even someone who doesn't consider himself creative can make memes that work. Using a variety of examples of memes both good and bad, Levinson guides readers step by step through the process of fashioning marketing materials that result in increased sales, savings, market share, and profits. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Connected Marketing: The Viral, Buzz and Word of Mouth Revolution by Justin Kirby and Paul Marsden (2005)
A business book about the state of the art in viral, buzz and word-of-mouth marketing. Written by 17 experts working at the cutting edge of viral, buzz and word-of-mouth marketing, Connected Marketing introduces the range of scalable, predictable and measurable solutions for driving business growth by stimulating positive brand talk between clients, customers and consumers. Connected Marketing shows how businesses can harness connectivity between clients, customers and consumers as powerful marketing media for driving demand. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Media Virus! by Douglas Rushkoff (1996)
Have you ever noticed that the word 'media' refers both to the tool for disseminating information in human societies as well as the substrate upon which geneticists grow bacteria and viruses? Rushkoff has written one of the more provocative and insightful analyses of the paths of conceptual infection in human media, and about the techniques and goals of those who spread media viruses. This fun, hip, yet insightful book is well worth buying. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Viral Explosions!: Proven Techniques to Expand, Explode, or Ignite Your Business or Brand Online by Peggy McColl, Michael Gerber (2010)
Internet growth has surpassed all projections and continues to expand every day. Those who are adapting to the online medium will reap the rewards for years to come and have the potential to grow their businesses and build their brands exponentially. Peggy McColl tells her story of discovering the power of online marketing to break through the clutter, capture a global customer base, and build her business. Using many examples and stories, Viral Explosions! gives you: A specific, proven program that even those who aren't techno-savvy can follow and tailor to their own goals. The vital differences and similarities between offline and online marketing that every marketer needs to know to be successful. The critical steps needed to build a global customer base, generate additional revenue, and foster customer loyalty...without having to leave the comfort of your home. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Viral Loop: From Facebook to Twitter, How Today's Smartest Businesses Grow Themselves by Adam L. Penenberg (2009)
In this clear-eyed collection of case studies, Fast Company contributing writer and NYU journalism professor Penenberg examines the engine driving the growth of web 2.0 businesses like Flickr, YouTube and eBay to Facebook and Twitter: the viral loop. The concept behind a viral loop is simple-in order to use the product, you have to spread it, thus creating massive, user-driven growth cycles-after all, Penenberg explains, social networks like Facebook are worthless to a user if one's friends aren't also using the products. Viral loops are nothing new, of course, and Penenberg has certainly done his homework, tracing the concept back through its analog roots via entertaining and enlightening anecdotes about companies like Tupperware, which used 'parties' to turn ordinary housewives into an army of sales reps, to Charles Ponzi-yes, he of the Ponzi scheme, a viral scam recently taken to historic levels by Bernie Madoff. Penenberg truly succeeds, however, in showing how the viral loop has found its groove on the Internet, fueling a wave of billion-dollar companies all built on word of mouth-and, of course, user clicks. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Herd: How to Change Mass Behaviour by Harnessing Our True Nature by Mark Earls (2009)
In 2003, the first white-painted bicycle shrine appeared on the streets of St Louis, Missouri, to commemorate a fallen rider. Soon, cities in other US states had their own versions; but today, we see these shrines in more than 80 cities around the world. Like the ‘cellotaphs’ – the rash of floral tributes that mark the site of road-accidents in the UK with cheap flowers and sentimental prose – this phenomenon seems to have come from nowhere and yet suddenly it is everywhere. How do you explain the explosion of cultural phenomena of things like this? Like the adoption of text messaging when there has been little or no active promotion of the behaviour? How a Mexican wave happens? The emergence of online communities? Unless you have a good explanation of how these kinds of things arise, you won’t have much chance of altering them. HERD explains that most of us have misunderstood the mechanics (the ‘how’) of mass behaviour because our thinking is shaped by misplaced notions of what it means to be human. This is why so many government initiatives struggle to create real change, why so much marketing money fails to drive sales, why most M&A programmes end up reducing shareholder value and most internal change projects don’t deliver lasting transformation. Mark Earls uses a diverse range of different sources, anecdotes and evidence – from the comic Peter Kay and urinal etiquette, to international rugby and the rise of new musical stars – to show that we are at heart a ‘we-species’, but one suffering from the ‘illusion of I’. In doing so, Earls challenges some of our deepest ideas to reveal the truth about who we are and what marketers, managers and governments can do to set about influencing mass behaviour. Bold in its conception and engaging in its execution, HERD offers the most radical new theory of consumer behaviour in a generation.
Beyond Viral: How to Attract Customers, Promote Your Brand, and Make Money with Online Video by Kevin Nalty and David Meerman Scott (2010)
Promote your product using the most visceral form of social media - online video. Learn how to create cost-effective videos, engage your customers, compel them to measurable behaviors (awareness, intent, and purchase), and sustain your brand online. Beyond Viral gives you the tools and tricks to successfully use online video to reach your business goals. Author Kevin Nalty is the only career marketer who doubles as one of the most-viewed YouTube comedians. Online video has huge potential, mostly untapped. Put your business at the forefront of this important medium with the proven methods described by Beyond Viral. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking by Andy Sernovitz, Guy Kawasaki and Seth Godin (2009)
Master the art of word of mouth marketing with this practical hands-on guide. With straightforward advice and humor, marketing expert Andy Sernovitz will show you how the world's most respected and profitable companies get their best customers for free through the power of word of mouth. Learn the five essential steps that make word of mouth work and everything you need to get started using them. Understand the real purpose of blogs, communities, viral email, evangelists, and buzz--when to use them and how simple it is to make them work. Learn what sparks the irrepressible enthusiasm of Apple and TiVo fans. Understand why everyone is talking about a certain restaurant, car, band, or dry cleaner--and why other businesses and products are ignored. Discover why some products become huge successes without a penny of promotion--and why some multi-million-dollar advertising campaigns fail to get noticed. Open your eyes to a new way of doing business--that honest marketing makes more money, because customers who trust you will talk about you. Learn how to be the remarkable company that people want to share with their friends. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip Heath and Dan Heath (2007)
Why do some ideas thrive while others die? And how do we improve the chances of worthy ideas? In Made to Stick, accomplished educators and idea collectors Chip and Dan Heath tackle head-on these vexing questions. Inside, the brothers Heath reveal the anatomy of ideas that stick and explain ways to make ideas stickier, such as applying the “human scale principle,” using the “Velcro Theory of Memory,” and creating “curiosity gaps.” View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Going Viral by Karine Nahon (2013)
We live in a world where a tweet can be instantly retweeted and read by millions around the world in minutes, where a video forwarded to friends can destroy a political career in hours, and where an unknown man or woman can become an international celebrity overnight. Virality: individuals create it, governments fear it, companies would die for it. So what is virality and how does it work? Why does one particular video get millions of views while hundreds of thousands of others get only a handful? In Going Viral, Nahon and Hemsley uncover the factors that make things go viral online. They analyze the characteristics of networks that shape virality, including the crucial role of gatekeepers who control the flow of information and connect networks to one another. They also explore the role of human attention, showing how phenomena like word of mouth, bandwagon effects, homophily and interest networks help to explain the patterns of individual behavior that make viral events. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Viral: How to Spread your Ideas like a Virus by R. L. Adams (2013)
Viral Marketing for the Next Generation of Webpreneurs - Learn how to Turn your Ideas into a Virus - The next generation of the Internet is upon us, and innovation has taken center stage. Gone are the days where raw goods, monetary investment, or a large labor force are required to succeed. In the factories of today's world, information is power, and ideas are the currency of innovation.
Contagious: Why Things Catch On by Jonah Berger (2013)
If you said advertising, think again. People don’t listen to advertisements, they listen to their peers. But why do people talk about certain products and ideas more than others? Why are some stories and rumors more infectious? And what makes online content go viral?

Wharton marketing professor Jonah Berger has spent the last decade answering these questions. He’s studied why New York Times articles make the paper’s own Most E-mailed List, why products get word of mouth, and how social influence shapes everything from the cars we buy to the clothes we wear to the names we give our children. In this book, Berger reveals the secret science behind word-of-mouth and social transmission. Discover how six basic principles drive all sorts of things to become contagious, from consumer products and policy initiatives to workplace rumors and YouTube videos. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.

And Then There's This: How Stories Live and Die in Viral Culture by Bill Wasik (2010)
Focusing on the phenomenon of viral culture, Wasik, senior editor at Harper's magazine, reflects on his own Internet experiments, beginning with the creation of flash mobs, a pop phenomena of 2003. Wasik asked hundreds of people to gather in public for no apparent reason, and news of these gatherings that mysteriously coalesced and disbanded spread rabidly through blogs and e-mails. The groups were created by Wasik to explore the growing world of memes, ideas that spread through culture, colonizing all as widely and ruthlessly as [they] can. He examines other Internet sensations—the meteoric rise and fall of pop bands, guerrilla marketing and political blogs—relating how such nanostories contribute to growing cynicism in a media-saturated and consumer-savvy public. He draws on the work of Steven Levitt and Malcolm Gladwell to demonstrate that the desire to interpret the analysis of culture has outstripped the desire to understand the culture itself. Wasik's examples are culled from the trivial — e.g., ephemeral indie bands and forgettable ad campaigns — but his deft style and provocative insights keep the book significant. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Jump Point: How Network Culture is Revolutionizing Business by Tom Hayes (2008)
Plug into the nonstop global economy of billion-selling products and trillion-dollar markets. The Web 3.0 world of 'pandemic economics' is a new economy that will function outside the traditional laws of commerce, free from today's impediments to business growth, and in a world where every person is connected to each other. Jump Point is the powerful guide that will help you to challenge old assumptions, rethink your business models, and take advantage of this fast-moving, unfettered, and fiercely competitive environment. Silicon Valley guru Tom Hayes explores how the new economy will arrive at a single jump point by 2011, bringing with it virulent market trends. Only those prepared for the new marketplace dynamics will be left standing amidst unfamiliar players, shape-shifting consumers, and wealth-evaporating forces. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Permission Marketing: Turning Strangers Into Friends And Friends Into Customers by Seth Godin (1999)
Seth Godin, one of the world's foremost online promoters, offers his best advice for advertising in Permission Marketing. Godin argues that businesses can no longer rely solely on traditional forms of 'interruption advertising' in magazines, mailings, or radio and television commercials. He writes that today consumers are bombarded by marketing messages almost everywhere they go. If you want to grab someone's attention, you first need to get his or her permission with some kind of bait--a free sample, a big discount, a contest, an 800 number, or even just an opinion survey. Once a customer volunteers his or her time, you're on your way to establishing a long-term relationship and making a sale. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Memetic self-help
Disinfect Your Mind: Defend Yourself with Memetics Against Mass Media, Politicians, Corporate Management, Your Aunt's Advice, and Other Mind Viruses by Ely Asher (2006)
While authorities in psychology discuss whether memetics is a science, its use by politicians, marketing departments and mass media becomes more and more ubiquitous. Consider a computer. You can only use a word processor to edit a text. You can only use a merchant's website to order merchandize. But you can use programming languages like C++ or C# to make a computer do virtually anything you want. Similarly, psychology is not enough anymore for politicians, mass media, and large businesses. Preinstalled programs in human minds, such as widely accepted social norms, habits, and prejudices, are not enough for them to exploit anymore. They want to make you do virtually anything they want you to do. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Everyday Magic: The Power of Memes by Ken Renshaw (2004)
Change your memes: Change your life. Memes are learned attitudes or behaviors, decisions and beliefs. They determine the Everyday Magic in our life, the way things flow. Life can be easy with everything magically turning out the way we wish. Life can be difficult, a struggle. It all depends on the memes you hold. This book shows you how to systematically examine and understand your memes and life pattern to change your Everyday Magic. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Non-human animal culture
The Question of Animal Culture by Kevin N. Laland, Bennett G. Galef, Kim Hill and Kristin E. Bonnie (2009)
Are the learning processes involved in the social inheritance of animals the same or different from those involved in the cultural transmission of humans? This book lifts the debate onto a level where it is possible to give an affirmative answer to the question of whether or not the antecedents of human culture can be found in other animals. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Animal Traditions: Behavioural Inheritance in Evolution by Eytan Avital and Eva Jablonka (2005)
Despite its almost universal acclaim, the authors contend that evolutionary explanations must take into account the well-established fact that in mammals and birds, the transfer of learned information is both ubiquitous and indispensable. Animal Traditions maintains the assumption that selection of genes supplies both a sufficient explanation of evolution and a true description of its course. The introduction of the behavioral inheritance system into the Darwinian explanatory scheme enables the authors to offer new interpretations for common behaviors such as maternal behaviors, behavioral conflicts within families, adoption, and helping. This approach offers a richer view of heredity and evolution, integrates developmental and evolutionary processes, suggests new lines for research, and provides a constructive alternative to both the selfish gene and meme views of the world. This book will make stimulating reading for all those interested in evolutionary biology, sociobiology, behavioral ecology, and psychology. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Evolution of Culture in Animals by John Tyler Bonner (1983)
We humans like to think we are unique in possessing culture, tools, and learning. Think again, oh sapiens, and stare at yourself in the mirror at the base of the tree of life: Professor Bonner has written a lucid and fascinating survey of culture and cultural-like patterns in the animals, and has also provided a simple overview of the neurophysiological bases of these phenomena. This 1980 book is a classic in the field--which is why it is in print again. There are more recent books on the topic, but we can still recommend this book heartily. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Chimpanzee Cultures by Richard W. Wrangham, W. C. McGrew, Frans B. M. de Waal and Paul Heltne (1996)
This volume presents the best up-to-date collection of the current state of knowledge of most aspects of chimpanzee behaviour, and it spells out the dangers now facing the apes and their environments. The study of chimpanzee cultures is crying out for more information from the increasingly isolated and diminishing communities of these apes. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Social Learning In Animals: The Roots of Culture by Cecilia M. Heyes and Bennett G. Galef Jr. (1996)
The increasing realization among behaviorists and psychologists is that many animals learn by observation as members of social systems. Such settings contribute to the formation of culture. This book combines the knowledge of two groups of scientists with different backgrounds to establish a working consensus for future research. The book is divided into two major sections, with contributions by a well-known, international, and interdisciplinary team which integrates these growing areas of inquiry. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Chimpanzee Material Culture: Implications for Human Evolution by W. C. McGrew (1992)
The chimpanzee of all other living species is our closest relation, with whom we last shared a common ancestor about five million years ago. These African apes make and use a rich and varied kit of tools, and of the primates they are the only consistent and habitual tool-users and tool-makers. Chimpanzees meet the criteria of a culture as originally defined for human beings by socio-cultural anthropologists. They show sex differences in using tools to obtain and to process a variety of plant and animal foods. The technological gap between chimpanzees and human societies that live by foraging (hunter-gatherers) is surprisingly narrow at least for food-getting. Different communities of wild chimpanzees have different tool-kits and not all of this regional and local variation can be explained by the demands of the physical and biotic environments in which they live. Some differences are likely to be customs based on socially derived and symbolically encoded traditions. This book describes and analyzes the tool-use of humankind's nearest living relation. It focuses on field studies of these apes across Africa, comparing their customs to see if they can justifiably be termed cultural. It makes direct comparisons with the material culture of human foraging peoples. The book evaluates the chimpanzee as an evolutionary model, showing that chimpanzee behavior helps us to infer the origins of technology in human prehistory. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Tree of Origin: What Primate Behavior Can Tell Us about Human Social Evolution by Frans B. M. de Waal, Richard Byrne, Prof. Robin Dunbar and W.C. McGrew (2002)
Nine of the world's leading primatologists come together in this engaging volume to discuss many of the evolutionary forces that have created Homo sapiens. Edited by the eminent de Waal (The Ape and the Sushi Master, Forecasts, Feb. 19) of Emory University, all nine essays find an appropriate middle ground neither too technical nor too simplistic. Each also summarizes the current state of research into some aspect of primate behavior and what we can learn from it about the evolution of human life and culture. The acquisition, distribution and preparation of food is central to the contributions by Craig Stanford and Richard Wrangham. Stanford argues that collaborative hunting may be responsible for the development of social intelligence, while Wrangham cogently links the discovery of cooking to the creation of the human mating system. Richard Byrne's contribution discusses the evolution of human intelligence by examining patterns of tool use and food manipulation in living primates. Charles Snowdon explores the twin concepts of communication and language by looking broadly across the animal kingdom and wrestling with the question of whether or not there is such a thing as a language instinct. William McGrew does much the same for culture, effectively demonstrating that humans can no longer be considered the sole purveyors of culture. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Memetic Algorithms
Multi-Objective Memetic Algorithms by Chi-Keong Goh, Yew-Soon Ong and Kay Chen Tan (2009)
The application of sophisticated evolutionary computing approaches for solving complex problems with multiple conflicting objectives in science and engineering have increased steadily in the recent years. Within this growing trend, Memetic algorithms are, perhaps, one of the most successful stories, having demonstrated better efficacy in dealing with multi-objective problems as compared to its conventional counterparts. Nonetheless, researchers are only beginning to realize the vast potential of multi-objective Memetic algorithm and there remain many open topics in its design. This book presents a very first comprehensive collection of works, written by leading researchers in the field, and reflects the current state-of-the-art in the theory and practice of multi-objective Memetic algorithms. 'Multi-Objective Memetic algorithms' is organized for a wide readership and will be a valuable reference for engineers, researchers, senior undergraduates and graduate students who are interested in the areas of Memetic algorithms and multi-objective optimization. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Recent Advances in Memetic Algorithms by William E. Hart, Natalio Krasnogor and J. E. Smith (2005)
Memetic algorithms are evolutionary algorithms that apply a local search process to refine solutions to hard problems. Memetic algorithms are the subject of intense scientific research and have been successfully applied to a multitude of real-world problems ranging from the construction of optimal university exam timetables, to the prediction of protein structures and the optimal design of space-craft trajectories. This monograph presents a rich state-of-the-art gallery of works on memetic algorithms. Recent Advances in Memetic Algorithms is the first book that focuses on this technology as the central topical matter. This book gives a coherent, integrated view on both good practice examples and new trends including a concise and self-contained introduction to memetic algorithms. It is a necessary read for postgraduate students and researchers interested in recent advances in search and optimization technologies based on memetic algorithms, but can also be used as complement to undergraduate textbooks on artificial intelligence. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Handbook of Memetic Algorithms (Studies in Computational Intelligence) by Ferrante Neri, Carlos Cotta and Pablo Moscato (Editors) (2010)
Memetic Algorithms (MAs) are computational intelligence structures combining multiple and various operators in order to address optimization problems. The combination and interaction amongst operators evolves and promotes the diffusion of the most successful units and generates an algorithmic behavior which can handle complex objective functions and hard fitness landscapes. “Handbook of Memetic Algorithms” organizes, in a structured way, all the the most important results in the field of MAs since their earliest definition until now. A broad review including various algorithmic solutions as well as successful applications is included in this book. Each class of optimization problems, such as constrained optimization, multi-objective optimization, continuous vs combinatorial problems, uncertainties, are analysed separately and, for each problem, memetic recipes for tackling the difficulties are given with some successful examples. Although this book contains chapters written by multiple authors, a great attention has been given by the editors to make it a compact and smooth work which covers all the main areas of computational intelligence optimization. It is not only a necessary read for researchers working in the research area, but also a useful handbook for practitioners and engineers who need to address real-world optimization problems. In addition, the book structure makes it an interesting work also for graduate students and researchers is related fields of mathematics and computer science.
Swarm, Evolutionary, and Memetic Computing: First International Conference on Swarm, Evolutionary, and Memetic Computing, SEMCCO 2010 by Bijaya Ketan Panigrahi, Swagatam Das, Ponnuthurai Nagaratnam Suganthan and Subhransu Sekhar Dash (2011)
This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the First International Conference on Swarm, Evolutionary, and Memetic Computing, SEMCCO 2010, held in Chennai, India, in December 2010. The 86 revised full papers presented were carefully reviewed and selected from 225 submissions. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Distributed Memetic Algorithms for Graph-Theoretical Combinatorial Optimization Problems by Thomas Fischer (2009)
In this thesis, three different graph-theoretical combinatorial optimization problems have been addressed by memetic and distributed algorithms. These three problems include the well-known 'Travelling Salesman Problem' (TSP) and the two communication problems 'Optimum Communication Spanning Tree Problem' (OCST) and 'Routing and Wavelength Assignment Problem' (RWA). The focus of the research presented in this thesis was on developing techniques to handle large instances of the above problems, where 'large' refers to problem sizes larger than those addressed in related works or large enough to pose a challenge for state-of-the-art heuristic solvers. For the TSP, a large number of publications and algorithms are available, so here research centers on how to solve large problem instances either by reducing the size of problem instances by fixing edges of a problem instance or by distributing the computation in sets of cluster nodes. For the OCST, a given local search algorithm was modified to handle large problem instances. The new local search algorithm was embedded into a distributed memetic algorithm with problem-specific recombination operators. For the RWA, most components of a distributed memetic algorithm were developed for this thesis, including local search, recombination, and distribution. To handle large problem instances, the algorithm was enhanced by a multilevel component to reduce the problem size. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Anthropogeny (Human Evolution)
How Humans Evolved by Robert Boyd and Joan B. Silk (1997)
Designed for students taking introductory courses in physical anthropology, this textbook offers a grounding in human genetics, primate ecology and the human fossil record. The book also covers Darwin's theory of natural selection, and the theme of behavioural ecology is stressed throughout. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Origin and evolution of humans and humanness by D. Tab Rasmussen (1993)
This is a collection of 6 articles from various anthropologists such as Lovejoy, Walker, Stringer, and Conkey. The book does a great job covering the major transitions in human evolution from Lovejoy's article on primates, sex, and Australopithecines to Walker's article on the origins of the Genus Homo and Homo erectus, an article on stone age technologies, Stringer's article on the origins of H. sapiens, Conkey's article on paleolithic art, and the final article on culture and its evolution. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Human By Nature: Between Biology and the Social Sciences by Peter Weingart, Sandra D. Mitchell, Peter J. Richerson and Sabine Maasen (Editors) (1997)
Representing a wide range of disciplines -- biology, sociology, anthropology, economics, human ethology, psychology, primatology, history, and philosophy of science - the contributors to this book recently spent a complete academic year at the Center for Interdisciplinary Research - discussing a plethora of new insights in reference to human cultural evolution. These scholars acted as a living experiment of "interdisciplinarity in vivo." The assumption of this experiment was that the scholars would be united intellectually as well as socially, a connection that might eventually enhance future interdisciplinary communication even after the research group had dispersed. An important consensus emerged: The issue of human culture poses a challenge to the division of the world into the realms of the "natural" and the "cultural" and hence, to the disciplinary division of scientific labor. The appropriate place for the study of human culture, in this group's view, is located between biology and the social sciences. Explicitly avoiding biological and sociological reductionisms, the group adopted a pluralistic perspective - "integrative pluralism" - that took into account both today's highly specialized and effective (sub-)disciplinary research and the possibility of integrating the respective findings on a case-by-case basis. Each sub-group discovered its own way of interdisciplinary collaboration and submitted a contribution to the present volume reflecting one of several types of fruitful cooperation, such as a fully integrated chapter, a multidisciplinary overview, or a discussion between different approaches. A promising first step on the long road to an interdisciplinarily informed understanding of human culture, this book will be of interest to social scientists and biologists alike. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Masters of the Planet: The Search for Our Human Origins by Ian Tattersall (2012)
When homo sapiens made their entrance 100,000 years ago they were confronted by a wide range of other early humans - homo erectus, who walked better and used fire; homo habilis who used tools; and of course the Neanderthals, who were brawny and strong. But shortly after their arrival, something happened that vaulted the species forward and made them the indisputable masters of the planet. This book is devoted to revealing just what that difference is. It explores how the physical traits and cognitive ability of homo sapiens distanced them from the rest of nature. Even more importantly, Masters of the Planet looks at how our early ancestors acquired these superior abilities; it shows that their strange and unprecedented mental facility is not, as most of us were taught, simply a basic competence that was refined over unimaginable eons by natural selection. Instead, it is an emergent capacity that was acquired quite recently and changed the world definitively.
Nature's Magic: Synergy in Evolution and the Fate of Humankind by Peter Corning (2003)
In Nature's Magic Peter Corning states that synergy--a vaguely familiar term to many of us--has been a wellspring of creativity in the natural world and has played a key role in the evolution of cooperation and complexity at all levels, from physics and chemistry to the latest human technologies. The 'Synergism Hypothesis' asserts that synergy is more than a class of interesting and ubiquitous effects. It has also been a major causal agency in evolution; it represents a unifying explanation for biological complexity and represents a different perspective on the evolutionary process. In contrast to gene-centered theories, or postulates of self-organization and emergent 'laws' of complexity, the Synergism Hypothesis represents, in essence, an 'economic' (or bio-economic) theory of complexity. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Holistic Darwinism: Synergy, Cybernetics, and the Bioeconomics of Evolution by Peter Corning (2005)
In recent years, evolutionary theorists have come to recognize that the reductionist, individualist, gene-centered approach to evolution cannot sufficiently account for the emergence of complex biological systems over time. Peter A. Corning has been at the forefront of a new generation of complexity theorists who have been working to reshape the foundations of evolutionary theory. Well known for his Synergism Hypothesis—a theory of complexity in evolution that assigns a key causal role to various forms of functional synergy—Corning puts this theory into a much broader framework in Holistic Darwinism, addressing many of the issues and concepts associated with the evolution of complex systems. Corning's paradigm embraces and integrates many related theoretical developments of recent years, from multilevel selection theory to niche construction theory, gene-culture coevolution theory, and theories of self-organization. Offering new approaches to thermodynamics, information theory, and economic analysis, Corning suggests how all of these domains can be brought firmly within what he characterizes as a post–neo-Darwinian evolutionary synthesis.
The synergism hypothesis: A theory of progressive evolution by Peter Corning (1983)
This book represents a major theoretical synthesis between the life sciences and the social sciences. Peter Corning shows that the selective advantages arising from various kinds of cooperation-from single-celled creatures to wolf packs to modern nation-states-are the cause of the directional aspect of evolutionary history, that is, the progressive emergence of more complex, hierarchically organized systems in the biological, cultural, and political realms. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Genes, Memes, Culture, and Mental Illness: Toward an Integrative Model by Hoyle Leigh (2010)
What produces mental illness: genes, environment, both, neither? The answer can be found in memes - replicable units of information linking genes and environment in the memory and in culture whose effects on individual brain development can be benign or toxic. This book reconceptualizes mental disorders as products of stressful gene-meme interactions and introduces a biopsychosocial template for meme-based diagnosis and treatment. A range of therapeutic modalities, both broad-spectrum (meditation) and specific (cognitive-behavioral), for countering negative memes and their replication are considered, as are possibilities for memetic prevention strategies. In this book, the author outlines the roles of genes and memes in the evolution of the human brain; elucidates the creation, storage, and evolution of memes within individual brains; examines culture as a carrier and supplier of memes to the individual; provides examples of gene-meme interactions that can result in anxiety, depression, and other disorders; proposes a multiaxial gene-meme model for diagnosing mental illness; identifies areas of meme-based prevention for at-risk children; and defines specific syndromes in terms of memetic symptoms, genetic/ memetic development, and meme-based treatment. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
How Tradition Works: A Meme-Based Cultural Poetics of the Anglo-Saxon Tenth Century by Michael D. C. Drout (2006)
How Tradition Works examines the ways traditions are created, constituted, modified, and recognized. Expanding and revising "memetic" theory, the book analyzes the culture of the tenth-century English Benedictine Reform. How Tradition Works shows how this flowering of culture can be traced to the reliance by Anglo-Saxon monks upon unchanging written rules, the Rule of St. Benedict and the Regularis Concordia. The book also examines the corpus of Old English wills, the Old English Rule of Chrodegang, and the "wisdom poems" of the Exeter Book. This interdisciplinary study is valuable for specialists in evolutionary theory and memetics, Anglo-Saxon studies, and scholars interested in Oral Traditional Theory. How Tradition Works provides researchers with new methodological tools as well as showing how these tools can work to untangle the intricacies of cultural change and stasis. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Understanding Suicide Terrorism from a Cultural and Memetic Perspective by David Wiklanski (2008)
The problem of Suicide Terrorism is not a new phenomenon. In fact, its roots can be traced back to the days of the Knights Templar. The modern day manifestation of this brand of terrorism, the suicide bomber, has been seen frequently throughout Sri Lanka as well as many other global hot spots. But what causes an individual to sacrifice their life and become a human bomb? There are several reasons for this phenomena, which are explored in this work. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Crisis in Sociology: The Need for Darwin by Joseph Lopreato and Timothy Alan Crippen (1999)
In the early years of the century, Alfred North Whitehead described the scientific mind as being characterized by an interest in relating general principles to stubborn facts. This book's premise is that the crisis in sociology is largely due to the discipline's lack of concern with either. Lopreato and Crippen believe that far too much of what goes on under the name of sociology today is either political harangue or mere data collection ungraced by reference to any general principles. They proceed to argue the case that evolutionary theory is essential for a deep undertanding of sociological phenomena. After an illuminating excursion into the history of sociology, the authors turn their attention to evolution, giving the reader a grasp of the logic of Darwinian thinking before applying it to a number of areas, including sex role differences, stratification, and ethnic chauvanism. The effort succeeds splendidly. Satisfied readers may inclined to examine Lopreato's earlier (and longer) book, "Human Nature and Biocultural Evolution" or E.O. Wilson's Pulitzer prize-winning "On Human Nature."
Encyclopedia of Urban Legends by Jan Harold Brunvand (2002)
Did you hear that Indiana University's library in Bloomington is sinking? This story which regularly evokes needless concern among university alumni is only one of thousands of urban legends that circulate in popular culture and especially on the Internet. Compiled by the foremost authority on this form of contemporary folklore, this unique encylopedia includes hundreds of such stories from published sources and oral tradition. Brunvand claims that only urban legends told in the United States are 'covered comprehensively,' but he does include four European versions in their original language. Each entry contains source citations (excluding popular and undocumented sources), but the selected bibliography covers a range of both scholarly and popular works. Alphabetically arranged, the entries cover individual legends ('Hairy-Armed Hitchhiker,' 'Procter and Gamble Trademark,' etc.) and legend themes (babies, technical incompetence, etc.). View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution by Gregory Cochran and Henry Harpending (2010)
A manifesto for and an example of a new kind of history, a biological history, and not just of the prehistoric era Scientists have long believed that the 'great leap forward' that occurred some 40,000 to 50,000 years ago in Europe marked the end of significant biological evolution in humans. In this stunning account of our evolutionary history, top scholars Gregory Cochran and Henry Harpending reject this conventional wisdom and reveal that the human species has undergone a storm of genetic change much more recently. Human evolution in fact accelerated after civilisation arose, they contend, and these ongoing changes have played a pivotal role in human history. They argue that biology explains the expansion of the Indo-Europeans, the European conquest of the Americas, and European Jews' rise to intellectual prominence. In each of these cases, the key was recent genetic change: adult milk tolerance in the early Indo-Europeans that allowed for a new way of life, increased disease resistance among the Europeans settling America, and new versions of neurological genes among European Jews. Ranging across subjects as diverse as human domestication, Neanderthal hybridization, and IQ tests, Cochran and Harpending's analysis demonstrates convincingly that human genetics have changed and can continue to change much more rapidly than scientists have previously believed. A provocative and fascinating look at human evolution, "The 10,000 Year Explosion" reveals the ongoing interplay between culture and biology in the making of the human race. Note that this book is much more interested in genes than it is in memes. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Nietzsche's New Darwinism by John Richardson (2004)
Nietzsche wrote in a scientific culture transformed by Darwin. He read extensively in German and British Darwinists, and his own works dealt often with such obvious Darwinian themes as struggle and evolution. Yet most of what Nietzsche said about Darwin was hostile: he sharply attacked many of his ideas, and often slurred Darwin himself as mediocre. So most readers of Nietzsche have inferred that he must have cast Darwin quite aside. But in fact, John Richardson argues, Nietzsche was deeply and pervasively influenced by Darwin. He stressed his disagreements, but was silent about several core points he took over from Darwin. Moreover, Richardson claims, these Darwinian borrowings were to Nietzsche's credit: when we bring them to the surface we discover his positions to be much stronger than we had thought. Even Nietzsche's radical innovations are more plausible when we expose their Darwinian ground; we see that they amount to a new Darwinism. Nietzsche's perspectival metaethics is not so much a rejection of natural selection, but an addition to natural selection of social selection and self-selection by those powerful enough to do it. Nietzsche may be an early forerunner of modern notions of memetics or gene-culture coevolution.
The Evolving Self: A Psychology for the Third Millennium by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (2010)
This title aims to provide 'a deeper understanding of the direction in which life on earth has been going, and hence a clearer sense of what the meaning of one's own life might be.' The author believes that becoming an active, conscious part of the evolutionary process can give our lives meaning and joy. In fact, the fate of humanity in the next millennium depends on the kind of selves we become today. An interesting feature of this book is the space provided at the end of each chapter for readers to jot down their thoughts about the issues covered, though libraries might find this problematic. Csikszentmihalyi goes beyond the psychobabble and traces human behavior from the beginning of time and shows with great clarity why we do the things we do. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Spiral Dynamics: Mastering Values, Leadership and Change by Don Edward Beck and Christopher Cowan (2005)
Spiral Dynamics introduces a new model for plotting the enormous economic and commercial shifts that are making contemporary business practice so complex and apparently fragmented. Focusing on cutting-edge leadership, management systems, processes, procedures, and techniques, the authors synthesize changes such as: Increasing cultural diversity; powerful new social responsibility initiatives and the arrival of a truly global marketplace. This is an inspiring book for managers, consultants, strategists, and leaders planning for success in the business world in the 21st century. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Evolution of Useful Things: How Everyday Artifacts-From Forks and Pins to Paper Clips and Zippers-Came to be as They are by Henry Petroski (1994)
How did the table fork acquire a fourth tine? What advantage does the Phillips-head screw have over its single-grooved predecessor? Why does the paper clip look the way it does? What makes Scotch tape Scotch? In this delightful book Henry, Petroski takes a microscopic look at artifacts that most of us count on but rarely contemplate, including such icons of the everyday as pins, Post-its, and fast-food "clamshell" containers. At the same time, he offers a convincing new theory of technological innovation as a response to the perceived failures of existing products — suggesting that irritation, and not necessity, is the mother of invention.
Material Cultures, Material Minds: The Impact of Things on Human Thought, Society, and Evolution by Nicole Boivin (2010)
Material culture has been part of a distinctively human way of life for over two million years. Recent symbolic and social analyses have drawn much attention to the role of material culture in human society, emphasizing the representational and ideological aspects of the material world. These studies have, nonetheless, often overlooked how the very physicality of material culture and our material surroundings make them unique and distinctive from text and discourse. In this study, Nicole Boivin explores how the physicality of the material world shapes our thoughts, emotions, cosmological frameworks, social relations, and even our bodies. Focusing on the agency of material culture, she draws on the work of a diverse range of thinkers, from Marx and Merleau-Ponty to Darwin, while highlighting a wide selection of new studies in archaeology, cultural anthropology, history, cognitive science, and evolutionary biology. She asks what is distinctive about material culture compared to other aspects of human culture and presents a comprehensive overview of material agency that has much to offer to both scholars and students
A scientific model of social and cultural evolution by Robert Bates Graber (1995)
Offers a model of the process underpinning - and in part constituting - socio-cultural evolution, describing the change from a small population comprising a large number of societies (foraging bands) to a large population comprising a small number of populous societies (states). View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Emancipation of the Soul: Memes of Destiny in American Mythological Television by Philipp Kneis (2010)
Has a technical section on memetics. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Why Most Things Fail: Evolution, Extinction and Economics by Paul Ormerod (2007)
Failure is the most fundamental feature of biological, social and economic systems. Just as species fail—and become extinct—so do companies, brands and public policies. And while failure may be hard to handle, understanding the pervasive nature of failure in the world of human societies and economies is essential for those looking to succeed. Linking economic models with models of biological evolution, Why Most Things Fail identifies the subtle patterns that comprise the apparent disorder of failure and analyzes why failure arises. Throughout the book, author Paul Ormerod exposes the flaws in some of today's most basic economic assumptions, and examines how professionals in both business and government can help their organizations survive and thrive in a world that has become too complex. Along the way, Ormerod discusses how the Iron Law of Failure applies to business and government, and reveals how you can achieve optimal social and economic outcomes by properly adapting to a world characterized by constant change, evolution and disequilibrium. Filled with in-depth insight, expert advice and illustrative examples, Why Most Things Fail will show you why failure is so common and what you can do to become one of the few who succeed.
Ideas of Culture by Frederick C. Gamst and Edward Norbeck (1976)
Compilation of articles by anthropologists on the meaning of the concept of culture. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Living on A Meme: How Anti-Corporate Activists Bend the Truth, and You, to Get What They Want by Richard Telofski (2012)
Living on a Meme - How Anti-Corporate Activists Bend the Truth, and You, to Get What They Want is about the NGOs and activist groups that engage corporations adversarially and how they use “meme” to further their anti-corporate agendas. What’s meme? Say the word as meeeeeem. The dictionary says that a meme is an idea that spreads from one person to another. And thanks to today’s Internet, memes get started, spread, and believed in a flash, whether they are true or not, making them formidable tools for groups that damage company reputations. Here in his fifth book, author Richard Telofski takes an in-depth look at anti-corporate NGOs and activist groups that use memes cleverly to “compete” with the image of the companies they target. These groups unabashedly use unchallenged memes to bribe people to their side of their anti-corporate argument. Bribe? Yes. By leveraging a meme, these groups bribe people with something, a way to feel better about themselves, often with scant or no support of the meme. Through their “meme-mangling,” adversarial NGOs and activists can impose undeserved damage on corporate reputations, costing market share, revenue, and jobs, maybe one of them yours. These organizations are truly competitors, not only to the individual corporations that they target, but also to the economic system in general. Living on a Meme is compiled from a selection of articles published on Richard’s Web site,, between August 1, 2009 through August 3, 2010. But, many of these writings are more essay than article. Within the essays in this book, you’ll find insights, theories, as well as specific facts and analysis on how certain NGOs and activist groups operate online and offline to sap companies of their vital reputation. By reading this book, you’ll discover how these “irregular” competitors make use of existing cultural memes, true or not, and how they contribute to those memes, strengthening them and contributing to the degradation of a company’s image. Don’t worry. This book isn’t just a repackaging of blog postings. You’re going to get more than that. At the end of each chapter you will find bonus “Take-Aways.” Those Take-Aways are critical analyses of the essays in the chapter, pointing out for you how what was just discussed relates to an NGO’s or activist’s reliance of living on a meme or their hope that YOU are living on THEIR meme for them. You’ll also find in this book 23 exclusive essays that appear only in this book.
Mirror Reversal by Richard Goscicki and David White (2008)
Mirror Reversal is a unique contribution to popular psychology and science fiction by platforming a torrid tale of one woman's descent into the depths of human misery on a solid understanding of basic principles of social science. Fast moving, sometimes riveting in its narrative, Goscicki's fascinating story-telling updates Catch 22 and Orwellian concepts in a novel illuminating the dark side of human nature. A fiction featuring memetics. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Memes of Translation: The Spread of Ideas in Translation Theory by Andrew Chesterman (2009)
This text covers such areas as survival machines for memes, the evolution of translation memes, from memes to norms, translation strategies, translation as theory, the development of traditional competence, and translation ethics.
No More War Memes: A practical, realistic program of cultural engineering to eliminate war from human society forever by Joe Rebholz (2009)
This book describes a practical program of cultural engineering that, over time, will eliminate war from human society forever. War is always a net loss to humanity, even though a few corporations and individuals may profit from it. So almost everyone should work to eliminate war. Wars are caused by war memes, ideas in people's minds, that lead them to war, contrary to their own self interest. We go to war because we are misled by our emotions, feelings, and limited thinking, based on war memes, which saturate most of our cultures. Using the latest results from psychology, neuroscience, sociology, political science, and cognitive linguistics, this book will show you how to identify, analyze, modify, or eliminate your war memes. More than 50 war memes are analyzed. The anti war movement can become a worldwide movement like the environmental movement, the anti slavery movement, and the women's liberation movements. We must eliminate war if humanity is to survive and prosper. Let's do it! View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
The Phenomenon of Man by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1955)
Visionary theologian and evolutionary theorist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin applied his whole life, his tremendous intellect, and his great spiritual faith to building a philosophy that would reconcile religion with the scientific theory of evolution. In this timeless book, which contains the quintessence of his thought, Teilhard argues that just as living organisms sprung from inorganic matter and evolved into ever more complex thinking beings, humans are evolving toward an "omega point"—defined by Teilhard as a convergence with the Divine. Available online View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
E-Book only
The Book of F*cking Hilarious Internet Memes by Richard Face (2012)
25 comic images 'jacked from the internet in an attempt to make some fast dough.


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