Teksty z Ulicy. Zeszyt memetyczny nr 15/2014
T h e o r i e s
Dobrosława Wężowicz-Ziółkowska
Units of Cultural Memory. Redefinition and interpretation of the memetic hypothesis in the perspective of Cultural Studies

From the perspective of Cultural Studies, the concept of meme proposed by Richard Dawkins and defined as a unit of cultural transfer, which equates imitation, is imprecise and inadeqaute considering our contemporary knowledge of culture, cultural transfer and cultural memory. The reinterpretation of the definition of meme presented in the article aims to specify it for the benefit of the theory of culture. The author analizes the anthropological concepts of cultural transfer, incorporating in it Jan Assmann’s theory of memory, and deferentiating between a meme understood as the smallest unit of cultural information, which undergoes rewriting in the deep structures of the cultural systems (cultural codes); a meme as a fragment of communicative memory, a unit of multiplying types of communicative behaviour (also in media); and finally a meme as a material junction of cultural memory of things.
cultural memory, meme, cultural transfer, cultural information
Andrzej Gecow
The importance of a view point for description and explanation in the Biological Turn. The purposeful information point of view in the biology and humanities as a base for memetics

Descriptions of the same phenomena from different points of view lead to much more complete picture than using one view point. The humanities are a descriptions of human society from human point. Treating those areas as a product of biological evolution creates an alternative point of view. The meeting of those two descriptions is a meeting of two cultures which have developed independently. On the common area a third culture emerge and builds a base for a mutual flow of outputs and it indicates defects on both sites. In the article a disscusion of problems of human point of view is given using artefacts example. The information based description increases its importance in the biology, especially in memetics, which creates urgent need of theory of information with its purposeful and semantic aspects. In the article such theory is announced.
Biological Turn, third culture, information based description, artefact
Jacek Lejman
Sociobiological roots of memetics

Memetics is now a thriving field of knowledge about man. However, the source, are associated with the development of sociobiology. Strictly speaking, are a response to the criticism directed as the assumptions and the conclusions derived from sociobiology. This is particularly true with regard to culture and the human mind, which on the basis of sociobiology in its early stages of development remained unexplained. The change that occurs in this regard, is associated with R. Dawkins genetic and memetics manifesto, but also the theory of gene-culture coevolution (E.O. Wilson and Ch. Lumsden). In this article I will try to present the main characteristics of this revolution that has taken place within a naturalistic conception of human nature. I’ll pay attention to the ethical implications of these changes.
sociobiology, memetics, Richard Dawkins, Edward O. Wilson, human nature
Kinga Kowalczyk-Purol
The problem of atheism in evolutionary explications of religion

The evolutionary theories of religion provide extremely promising, coherent, and well corresponding with scientific achievements theoretical framework for religion, which is considered to be one of the most difficult phenomena to explain. Generally, using this perspective, religion’s long-lasting persistence in the history of mankind, is viewed as an adaptation in Darwinian sense. In other words, religion exists because it is somehow essential for people’s survival. If so, another issue emerges in the ground; that is, how to explain the growing dissemination of atheism by using conceptual schemas of the evolutionary approach. Therefore the main aim of the work is to provide an overview of some proposed explanations of this problematic issue. In order to fulfill this aim, this work contains an overview of the evolutionary study of religion as well as the presentation of epistemically most valuable strategies of accommodation atheism to the framework of evolutionary theories of religion.
atheism, religion, evolution, cultural adaptations
P r a c t i c e s
Andrzej Stępnik
Memetic engineering. The attempt on the definition and assessment

The first aim of the article is to create an adequate definition of memetic engineering. The memetic engineering is defined as intentional activity relies on creation of mems and memplexes and transferring it to the carriers’ minds in order to persuade carrriers to behave in specific way. The second aim is an attempt to moral judge the applications of memetic engineering from the perspective of normative ethics and religious systems, and to present the criteria of moral judgment.
Memetic engineering, definitions, meme, ethics, morality
Marek Kaczmarzyk
Memetic engineering at school. Towards evolutionary teaching

Creating and maintaining variety of cultural components is very important for each and every generation. This variety secures our safety. Nowadays it does not feel comprehensive to understand the cultural transmission processes without including the memetic perspective. It seems advantageous to consider something along the lines of “memetic engineering” in schools, which we called “evolutionary teaching”. We believe that in order to understand what a school is it is important to understand three basic elements. First, the very nature of the evolutionary process. Second, the importance of the biological background for the human brain and mind, where the latter depends on the former. Third, the memetic perspective, where strategies for survival are chosen by the memes based on certain characteristics of the school’s environment. Memetic variety guarantees that in the age of fast-changing reality we will never encounter unsolvable problems due to the lack of certain memetic “bricks”, which are necessary to build essential competences.
memetic engineering, evolutionary teaching, neurobiology, neuroteaching
Stanisław Masłowski
Memetic engineering towards advertisement communication

The author points that cultural behaviours are realised by communication – he treats the advertisement as a process of communication, and so: being a part of human culture. The process of thinking (taking place in human brain) can be considered as resulting in constant anticipations – and thus is connected to the learning skills and should be related to various kinds of predictions, such as golobal market actions. Author describes relations between memetic engineering and advertisement communication in the context of using memes and memeplexes to intentional manipulating of receivers of various messages in aim to gaining specific changes in behaviour. Author points to the similarities of the ways of being manipulated by memes. Both memes and techniques of manipulation pursue to achieve their own goals. Finally, it has been said that the techniques of manipulations present in communications contain memes and memeplexes and are a perfect environment for their replication.
memetic engineering, advertisement, cultural communication, manipulation
Antonina Szybowska, Barbara Wolek-Kocur
The Uncle Google’s memes’ (in)variability

The Google company – with its most reknown product, the popular WEB browser – is known for unconventional PR actions. The doodles, graphic modifications of the Google logo (introduced for special occasions), are the main point of interest for this article. The authors analyse the forms, types, events, persons the doodle “celebrate”, and also the types of modifications made and the ways doodle function in the Internet. They consider the users’ comments, adaptations and modifications (such as demotivators – see graphic examples attached) as of big value too. The authors ask about the purpose of the company’s actions considering them as a possible memetic engineering strategy.
Google, doodle, internet meme, logo, memetic engineering
Barbara Wolek-Kocur
Like! Few words about a certain meme

Like! button is a widget functioning on Facebook, but also more and more frequently seen on private and public web sites, portals and services. It is not only an expression of idea of media convergention, but also a real manifestation of social media revolution. High identification rank and a simplicity of this mark have made it not also open to modifications, but also an attractive meme. Its appearance has moved the whole meme machine with a leading role of internet. The author says that the persistent omnipresence of social media and the culture of convergention, but also very successive memetic engineering of Facebook creators are the explanation of the viral success of Like!.
meme, internet meme, like!, social media, Facebook
Ewelina Pępiak
The Three Burials of the Other. The Politics of Representation across the United-States – Mexico Border

The article explores the politics of representation regarding Mexicans in the American iconography. The North American troublesome neighbourhood has resulted in a number of both debasing and idealising stereotypes which are predominantly informed by the US imperialist identity project. The author argues that the logic of subjugating the Other in the process of standardisation reinforces the circulation of power and cultural hegemony. As the effect of dynamic work on and replication of a memeplex of unequal power play, the two-pronged mythology finds its embodiment in a number of cultural artifacts and narratives produced both in Mexico and in the United States. The article contains an analysis of Tommy Lee Jones’ film, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada inspired by a murder of Esequiel Hernandez committed by a US Marine in 1997.
politics of representation, cinematography, manipulation, Other, Mexicans, America
R e v i e w s, p o l e m i c s, o p i n i o n s
Magdalena Mrowiec
Chaplain of mind,dervish of ahteis. A review of Devil’s chaplain. Reflections on Hope, Lies, Science, and Love by Richard Dawkins
Elżbieta Kwade
O, Meme! A review of the article by Marta Juza, Memy internetowe – tworzenie, rozpowszechnianie, znaczenie społeczne, „Studia Medioznawcze” 2013, nr 4
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