David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Oxford University Press (1993)
This book offers a defense of the tensed theory of time, a critique of the New Theory of Reference, and an argument that simultaneity is absolute. Although Smith rejects ordinary language philosophy, he shows how it is possible to argue from the nature of language to the nature of reality. Specifically, he argues that semantic properties of tensed sentences are best explained by the hypothesis that they ascribe to events temporal properties of futurity, presentness, or pastness and do not merely ascribe relations of earlier than or simultaneity. He criticizes the New Theory of Reference, which holds that "now" refers directly to a time and does not ascribe the property of presentness. Smith does not adopt the old or Fregean theory of reference but develops a third alternative, based on his detailed theory of de re and de dicto propositions and a theory of cognitive significance. He concludes the book with a lengthy critique of Einstein's theory of time. Smith offers a positive argument for absolute simultaneity based on his theory that all propositions exist in time. He shows how Einstein's relativist temporal concepts are reducible to a conjunction of absolutist temporal concepts and relativist nontemporal concepts of the observable behavior of light rays, rigid bodies, and the like.
|Keywords||Time Language and languages Philosophy|
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|Call number||BD638.S64 1993|
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Citations of this work BETA
Samuel Baron, John Cusbert, Matt Farr, Maria Kon & Kristie Miller (2015). Temporal Experience, Temporal Passage and the Cognitive Sciences. Philosophy Compass 10 (8):560-571.
Thorben Petersen (forthcoming). The Grounding Problem for Eternalism. Philosophical Studies:1-34.
Dean W. Zimmerman (2005). The A-Theory of Time, the B-Theory of Time, and 'Taking Tense Seriously'. Dialectica 59 (4):401–457.
Cody Gilmore (2006). Where in the Relativistic World Are We? Philosophical Perspectives 20 (1):199–236.
Takeshi Sakon (2015). Presentism and the Triviality Objection. Philosophia 43 (4):1089-1109.
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