David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 14 (3):221 – 236 (2000)
In this essay I address the issue of whether Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity counts against a tensed or "A-series" understanding of time. Though this debate is an old one, it continues to be lively with many prominent authors recently arguing that a genuine A-series is compatible with a relativistic world view. My aim in what follows is to outline why Special Relativity is thought to count against a tensed understanding of time and then to address the philosophical attempts to reconcile the two theories. I conclude that while modern physics on its own does not rule out the possibility of a real A-series, the combination of Einstein's theory and the philosophical arguments against tense is decisive. The upshot is that the tenseless or "B-series" view of time is the best one.
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References found in this work BETA
Saul Kripke (2010). Naming and Necessity. In Darragh Byrne & Max Kölbel (eds.), Philosophy. Routledge 431-433.
Huw Price (1996). Time's Arrow & Archimedes' Point: New Directions for the Physics of Time. Oxford University Press.
Michael Tooley (2000). Time, Tense, and Causation. Oxford University Press.
John Perry (1979). The Problem of the Essential Indexical. Noûs 13 (December):3-21.
D. H. Mellor (1981). Real Time. Cambridge University Press.
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