David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
The Monist 88 (3):329-335 (2005)
Some say that presentism precludes time travel into the past since it implies that the past does not exist, but this is a bad argument. Presentism says that only currently existing entities exist, and that the only properties and relations those entities instantiate are those that they currently instantiate. This does in a sense imply that the past does not exist. But if that precluded time travel into the past, it would also preclude the one-second-per-second “time travel” into the future that is ordinary persistence, for presentism accords the future the same ontological status as the past. Instead of quantifying over past and future objects and events, presentists speak a tensed language, regimented with primitive sentential tense operators. For a presentist, a persisting person is one who did exist, and who will exist. Regimented, these claims become: it was the case that she exists, and it will be the case that she exists. The presentist may then apply the same strategy to time travel proper. Suppose Katy travels back to the time of the dinosaurs. The presentist can say that it was the case two hundred million years ago that Katy exists. This claim, which consists of a present-tense statement “Katy exists” embedded within the past tense operator it was the case two hundred million years ago that, is exactly the sort of statement about time that a presentist is free to accept. This has all been made clear by Simon Keller and Michael Nelson ( ). In addition to rebutting the bad argument against the consistency of presentism and time travel, Keller and Nelson argue positively in favor of consistency by showing how to translate David Lewis’s ( ) account of time travel into the presentist’s tensed language. The appearance of con ict between presentism and time travel, they argue, is due only to the fact that most defenders of time travel (for example Lewis) have tended to phrase their defenses in nonpresentist terms. As much as I applaud their rebuttal of the bad argument, I wish to sound a note of caution..
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Nikk Effingham (2011). Temporal Parts and Time Travel. Erkenntnis 74 (2):225-240.
Similar books and articles
Jay Kennedy (2010). The Plato Code. The Philosophers' Magazine 51 (51):36-45.
Patricia Pisters (2011). Synaptic Signals: Time Travelling Through the Brain in the Neuro-Image. Deleuze Studies 5 (2):261-274.
William Godfrey-Smith (1980). Travelling in Time: [Analysis "Problem" No. 18]. Analysis 40 (2):72 - 73.
Robert Weingard (1972). On Travelling Backward in Time. Synthese 24 (1-2):117 - 132.
Manolo Martínez (2011). Travelling in Branching Time. Disputatio 4 (31):59-75.
Kristie Miller (2006). Travelling in Time: How to Wholly Exist in Two Places at the Same Time. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 36 (3):309-334.
Nikk Effingham & Jon Robson (2007). A Mereological Challenge to Endurantism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (4):633 – 640.
G. C. Goddu (2002). A Useful Time Machine. Philosophy 77 (2):281-282.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads129 ( #8,294 of 1,168,018 )
Recent downloads (6 months)10 ( #19,850 of 1,168,018 )
How can I increase my downloads?