Memetics Books

Criticisms

This is a collection of books related to the topic of criticisms of memetics. The list is associated with my 2011 "Memetics" book - which is now available.

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Secular criticism
Darwinian Creativity and Memetics by Maria Kronfeldner (2010)
Maria Kronfeldner examines how Darwinism has been used to explain novelty and change in culture through the Darwinian approach to creativity and the theory of memes. The first claims that creativity is based on a Darwinian process of blind variation and selection, while the latter claims that culture is based on and explained by units - memes - that are similar to genes. Both theories try to describe and explain mind and culture by applying Darwinism by way of analogies. Kronfeldner shows that the analogies involved in these theories lead to claims that give either wrong or at least no new descriptions or explanations of the phenomena at issue. Whereas the two approaches are usually defended or criticized on the basis that they are dangerous for our vision of ourselves, this book takes a different perspective: it questions the acuteness of these approaches. Darwinian theory is not like a dangerous wolf, hunting for our self image. Far from it, in the case of the two analogical applications addressed in this book, Darwinian theory is shown to behave more like a disoriented sheep in wolf's clothing. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.
Religious criticism
Dawkins' GOD: Genes, Memes, and the Meaning of Life by Alister McGrath (2004)
In this tour-de-force Alister McGrath approaches the edifice of self-confident, breezy atheism so effectively promoted by Richard Dawkins, and by deft dissection and argument reveals the shallowness, special-pleading and inconsistencies of his world-picture. Here is a book which helps to rejoin the magnificence of science to the magnificence of Godís good Creation. This book criticises memes. View on Google Books the book page, the author page, or the book contents.

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