On time, tense, and aspect: An essay in English metaphysics

In 1936, Benjamin Lee Whorf wrote a justly famous paper entitled "An American Indian Model of the Universe" (Carroll, 1956). In that paper, Whorf criticized the easy assumption that people in different cultures, speaking radically different languages, share common presuppositions about what the world is like. He contrasted the Hopi view of space and time with what he called elsewhere the Standard Average European view. For the Hopi, space and time are inherently relativistic; for the speaker of Western European languages, like English, the universe is basically Newtonian, time and space are absolute, "containers" of things and events.
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