Evolution and Literature Web Paper 2

ajohnston's picture

Music of Evolution: Natural Selection and Jazz Improvisation

           In Darwin’s Dangerous Idea, Daniel C.Dennett uses the concept of an algorithm to shed light on Darwin’s theory of Natural Selection. According to Dennett, evolutionary change as a result of random variation and differential reproductive success can be understood as a “formal process that can be counted on – logically – to yield a certain result whenever it is ‘run’ or instantiated.” (Dennett, 50). The three defining elements of an algorithm fulfill the : substrate neutrality, underlying mindlessness, and guaranteed results. Viewing seemingly complex biological phenomena through such a formulaic lens can be intriguing or frightening depending on one’s frame of mind.

phyllobates's picture

The Synchronized Evolution of the Meme of Time and Timekeeping Devices

Jen Schmidt 

March 13, 2011

The Synchronized Evolution of the Meme of Time and Timekeeping Devices

 

bhealy's picture

First Comes Love then Comes Marriage? The Evolution of Marriage in the United States

First Comes Love then Comes Marriage?

The Evolution of Marriage in the United States

 

 

 

the.believer's picture

Evolution of Language: Chomsky & Dennett

 Jenny Cai

Professor Grobstein

March 14, 2011

Evolution of Language: Chomsky & Dennett

skindeep's picture

Danielle Dennett and Free Will – Is Free Will an Evolutionary Gift?

mgz24's picture

The Evolution of Violence in Sports

 The Evolution of Violence in Sports

kgrass's picture

The Culture of Evolution

Katie Grassle

Web Paper 2

 

The Culture of Evolution

Evolution has been used as a metaphor to describe cultural change, especially in this class. We have been discussing biological evolution and cultural evolution as two separate entities, when I think both greatly shape one-another. Our culture can shape our biology, whether it is technological innovation to help us adapt to an environment or how we can actually change the environment we live in. 

hope's picture

Another Picture of Memes

Meme: A cultural element or behavioural trait whose transmission and consequent persistence in a population, although occurring by non-genetic means (esp. imitation), is considered as analogous to the inheritance of a gene.

-Oxford English Dictionary

The first time I was exposed to the idea of memes was in Daniel Dennett’s book, Darwin’s Dangerous Idea, which I read for a college class on evolution. Dennett gave several examples of things he considered memes, such as the wheel, the arch, Beethoven’s 5th symphony, and Moby Dick. He argued that evolution is an algorithmic process that works on memes in the same way it works on genes. 

KT's picture

THE STORY OF PLAY

 
                                                                                                                       


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