Temporal Ontology, Misc

Edited by Sam Baron (Australian Catholic University)
Assistant editor: David Ingram (University of York)
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  1. added 2020-05-25
    A Conceptual Analysis of Julian Barbour's Time.Maria Kon - 2012 - Dissertation, University of Leeds
    One of Julian Barbour’s main aims is to solve the problem of time that appears in quantum geometrodynamics (QG). QG involves the application of canonical quantization procedure to the Hamiltonian formulation of General Relativity. The problem of time arises because the quantization of the Hamiltonian constraint results in an equation that has no explicit time parameter. Thus, it appears that the resulting equation, as apparently timeless, cannot describe evolution of quantum states. Barbour attempts to resolve the problem by allegedly eliminating (...)
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  2. added 2020-05-18
    Spatiotemporal Analogies: Are Space and Time Similar?Edward Slowik - 2002 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 40:123-134.
    This paper investigates a famous argument, first introduced by Richard Taylor, that attempts to establish a radical similarity in the concepts of space and time. The argument contends that the spatial and temporal aspects of material bodies are much more alike, or analogous, than has been hitherto acknowledged. As will be demonstrated, most of the previous investigations of Taylor and company have failed to pinpoint the weakest link in their complex of analogies. By concentrating on their most fundamental cases, however, (...)
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  3. added 2020-04-21
    Can God Promise Us a New Past? A Response to Lebens and Goldschmidt.Bogdan Faul - 2020 - Open Theology 6 (1):167-174.
    Samuel Lebens and Tyron Goldschmidt provided original theodicies, which suggest that at one time God will change the past, either by erasing/substituting the sins of humans or erasing the whole entirety of evils. Both theodicies imply the idea that God can completely change the past without leaving any traces. In this paper, I argue that Lebens’ and Goldschmidt’s preferred model, which they call the scene-changing theory, is problematic. First, its complex metaphysical foundation could be replaced with presentism (roughly, the view (...)
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  4. added 2020-04-14
    Are the Folk Functionalists About Time?Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - manuscript
    This paper empirically investigates the contention that the folk concept of time is a functional concept: a concept according to which time is (and perhaps necessarily so) whatever actually plays certain functional roles. This hypothesis could explain why, in previous research, surprisingly large percentages of participants judge that there is time worlds that contain no one-dimensional substructure of ordered instants. If it seems to participants that even in those worlds certain functional roles are played, then this could explain why they (...)
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  5. added 2020-04-14
    An Empirical Investigation of the Role of Direction in Our Concept of Time.Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Acta Analytica:1-23.
    This paper empirically investigates one aspect of the folk concept of time (amongst US residents), by testing how the presence or absence of directedness impacts judgements about whether there is time in a world. Experiment 1 found that dynamists (those who think the actual world contains an A-series), showed significantly higher levels of agreement that there is time in dynamically directed (growing block) worlds than in non-dynamical non-directed (C-theory) worlds. Comparing our results to those of Latham et al. (ms), we (...)
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  6. added 2020-03-20
    On Time and the Varieties of Science.David Braddon-Mitchell & Kristie Miller - 2017 - Boston Studies in the Philosophy and History of Science 326:67-85.
    This paper proffers an account of why interdisciplinary research on, inter alia, the nature of time can be fruitful even if the disciplines in question have different explanatory pro-jects. We suggest that the special sciences perform a subject setting role for lower-level disciplines such as physics. In essence, they tell us where, amongst a theory of the physical world, we should expect to locate phenomena such as temporality; they tell us what it would take for there to be time. Physical (...)
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  7. added 2020-02-20
    Dynamic Absolutism and Qualitative Change.Bahadır Eker - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-11.
    According to Fine’s famous take on the infamous McTaggartian paradox, realism about tensed facts is incompatible with the joint acceptence of three very general and seemingly plausible theses about reality. However, Correia and Rosenkranz have recently objected that Fine’s argument depends on a crucial assumption about the nature of tensed facts; once that assumption is given up, they claim, realists can endorse the theses in question without further ado. They also argue that their novel version of tense realism, called dynamic (...)
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  8. added 2020-02-07
    The Invisible Thin Red Line.Giuliano Torrengo & Samuele Iaquinto - forthcoming - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly.
    The aim of this paper is to argue that the adoption of an unrestricted principle of bivalence is compatible with a metaphysics that (i) denies that the future is real, (ii) adopts nomological indeterminism, and (iii) exploits a branching structure to provide a semantics for future contingent claims. To this end, we elaborate what we call Flow Fragmentalism, a view inspired by Kit Fine (2005)’s non-standard tense realism, according to which reality is divided up into maximally coherent collections of tensed (...)
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  9. added 2020-02-06
    Can Time Flow at Different Rates? The Differential Passage of A-Ness.Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-26.
    According to the No Alternate Possibilities (NAP) argument, (1) if time passes then the rate at which it passes could be different but (2) time cannot pass at different rates, and hence (3) time cannot pass. Typically, defenders of the NAP argument have focussed on defending premise (1), and have taken the truth of (2) for granted: they accept the orthodox view of rate necessitarianism. In this paper we argue that the defender of the NAP argument needs to turn her (...)
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  10. added 2020-01-26
    An Empirical Investigation of Purported Passage Phenomenology.Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophy.
    It has widely been assumed, by philosophers, that most people unambiguously have a phenomenology as of time passing, and that this is a datum that philosophical theories about both the nature of time, and experience, must accommodate. Moreover, it has been assumed that the greater the extent to which people have said phenomenology, the more likely they are to endorse a dynamical theory of time. This paper is the first to empirically test these assumptions. We found that, on average, participants (...)
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  11. added 2020-01-17
    Contemporary Metaphysics and the Issue of Time: Re-Thinking the “Great Divide”.Sandra B. Rosenthal - 1999 - International Philosophical Quarterly 39 (2):157-171.
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  12. added 2019-12-14
    J. McTaggart And H. Mellor on Time.Jonas Dagys - 2008 - Problemos 73:115-121.
    The article analyzes John McTaggart’s argument for unreality of time, a classical piece of fin de siècleBrittish idealist metaphysics. Having accepted the distinction between A-series and B-series, one can only resist McTaggartian conclusion by denying at least one of the two: that B-series alone is insufficient for change or that A-series implies a contradiction. Hugh Mellor’s criticism is taken to represent thisstrategy. The lesson to be learnt from this debate is that if the world is conceived as a mere totality (...)
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  13. added 2019-12-14
    Space, Time and Causality. [REVIEW]D. M. Armstrong - 1984 - Philosophy 59:539.
  14. added 2019-12-14
    Thomism and Modern Science: Relationships Past, Present, and Future.W. A. Wallace - 1968 - The Thomist 32 (1):67.
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  15. added 2019-12-10
    Time as Narrative: An Ontological Daydream.Marcos Wagner Da Cunha - manuscript
    A thought experiment on the ultimate non-essence of Time.
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  16. added 2019-12-08
    Beyond A-Theory and the Block Universe: A Non-Circular Derivation of “Before”, Change, and the Local Arrow of Time.Daniel Saudek - 2020 - Kriterion - Journal of Philosophy 34 (1):21-48.
    This article proposes a “third way” in the philosophy of time beyond A-theory and the block universe, in which time is understood as a purely local phenomenon. It does so by starting with simple metaphysical assumptions about substances and their properties. Based on these assumptions, the notions of “before”, of change, and of time as local quantification of change can be derived non-circularly, i.e. without invoking temporal concepts. I then proceed to prove the irreversibility of local time by showing that (...)
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  17. added 2019-12-08
    Is Ontology the Key to Understanding Tense?Yuval Dolev - 2018 - Synthese 195 (4):1741-1749.
    In this paper I claim that as bitter as the eternalist/presentist rivalry is, as far as both camps are concerned, a third position—which I defend—is more disturbing. The reason is that what eternalists and presentists agree on is more fundamental than what they disagree about. They agree that time carves, to use Orilia’s term, “ontological inventories.” This in a way answers the “fundamental question”—what is time? They disagree about the contents of the inventories, but that, I suggest, is a secondary (...)
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  18. added 2019-12-08
    A Defeating Objection to Dynamic Block Theories of Time.Barry Lee - 2016 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 5 (3):185-189.
    McTaggart's argument against the reality of the A series poses a serious problem for the moving-now block theory of time. A defender of MNBT can respond along lines suggested by Broad: by denying that we should understand ‘e was present’ as saying that e is present at some past moment t. There is, however, a serious—plausibly defeating—objection to this type of response: it implicitly denies a non-negotiable platitude about time. As a result, MNBT is not tenable. Growing block theories are (...)
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  19. added 2019-12-08
    Relational Time.Matteo Morganti - 2015 - In Tomasz Bigaj & Christian Wuthrich (eds.), Metaphysics in Contemporary Physics. Brill Rodopi. pp. 215-236.
    This paper defends a relational view of time based on recent work on quantum gravity. Julian barbour's relational approach to physical theory, in particular, is developed as a basis for a relational, rather than anti-realist, metaphysics of time.
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  20. added 2019-12-08
    Supervenience and Reductionism in Leibniz’s Philosophy of Time.Michael J. Futch - 2002 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (4):793-810.
    It has recently been suggested that, for Leibniz, temporal facts globally supervene on causal facts, with the result that worlds differing with respect to their causal facts can be indiscernible with respect to their temporal facts. Such an interpretation is at variance with more traditional readings of Leibniz’s causal theory of time, which hold that Leibniz reduces temporal facts to causal facts. In this article, I argue against the global supervenience construal of Leibniz’s philosophy of time. On the view of (...)
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  21. added 2019-12-08
    McTaggart’s Paradox and the Infinite Regress of Temporal Attributions: A Reply to Smith.L. Nathan Oaklander - 1987 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 25 (3):425-431.
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  22. added 2019-08-15
    Back to the (Branching) Future.Giacomo Andreoletti - forthcoming - Acta Analytica:1-14.
    The future is different from the past. What is past is fixed and set in stone. The future, on the other hand, is open insofar as it holds numerous possibilities. Branching-tree models of time account for this asymmetry by positing an ontological difference between the past and the future. Given a time t, a unique unified past lies behind t, whereas multiple alternative existing futures lie ahead of t. My goal in this paper is to show that there is an (...)
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  23. added 2019-07-09
    Temporal Ersatzism.Nina Emery - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 12 (9):e12441.
    Temporal ersatzism is the view that past entities exist, but are not concrete. The view is analogous to modal ersatzism, according to which merely possible worlds exist, but are not concrete. The goal of this paper is to give the reader a sense of the scope of available temporal ersatzist views, the ways in which the analogy with modal ersatzism may be helpful in characterizing and defending those views, and the sorts of considerations that are relevant when evaluating particular versions (...)
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  24. added 2019-06-27
    Temporal Fictionalism for a Timeless World.Sam Baron, Kristie Miller & Jonathan Tallant - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    Current debate in the metaphysics of time ordinarily assumes that we should be realists about time. Recently, however, a number of physicists and philosophers of physics have proposed that time will play no role in a completed theory of quantum gravity. This paper defends fictionalism about temporal thought, on the supposition that our world is timeless. We argue that, in the face of timeless physical theories, realism about temporal thought is unsustainable: some kind of anti-realism must be adopted. We go (...)
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  25. added 2018-09-06
    Presentness, Where Art Thou? Self-Locating Belief and the Moving Spotlight.Kristie Miller - 2017 - Analysis 77 (4):777-788.
    Ross Cameron's The Moving Spotlight argues that of the three most common dynamical theories of time – presentism, the growing block theory and the moving spotlight theory – his version of the MST is the best. This paper focuses on Cameron's response the epistemic objection. It considers two of Cameron's arguments: that a standard version of the MST can successfully resist the epistemic objection, and that Cameron's preferred version of the MST has an additional avenue open to it for resisting (...)
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  26. added 2018-08-24
    The Cresting Wave: A New Moving Spotlight Theory.Kristie Miller - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (1):94-122.
    One argument for the moving spotlight theory is that it better explains certain aspects of our temporal phenomenology than does any static theory of time. Call this the argument from passage phenomenology. In this paper it is argued that insofar as moving spotlight theorists take this to be a sound argument they ought embrace a new version of the moving spotlight theory according to which the moving spotlight is a cresting wave of causal efficacy. On this view it is more (...)
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  27. added 2018-07-04
    Reflection on the dairy industrial modernization in S. Miguel (1941-1946). An experimental philosophy essay on the ontology of time.Miguel Soares de Albergaria - 2018 - Omnia 8 (2).
    This paper presents a case study for the elucidation of historical time. Specifically, it configures the sudden modernization of dairy industry in an island whose other historic dimensions shall have however remained relatively stable, S. Miguel (Azores), in view of a complete explanation of this process. On the basis of such explanation, certain inferences, according to Hempel's deductive model, are considered legitimate, on the theoretical formulation of time that can frame such a process. Namely, proposing the theses of A-theory (McTaggart) (...)
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  28. added 2018-04-09
    Can Things Endure in Tenseless Time.Rögnvaldur Ingthorsson - 2009 - SATS 10 (1):79-99.
    It has been argued that the tenseless view of time is incompatible with endurantism. This has been disputed, perhaps most famously by Hugh Mellor and Peter Simons. They argue that things can endure in tenseless time, and indeed must endure if tenseless time is to contain change. In this paper I will point out some difficulties with Mellor’s and Simons’ claims that in tenseless time a particular can be ‘wholly present’ at various times, and therefore endure, as well as have (...)
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  29. added 2018-03-05
    Skow on the Passage of Time.Alastair Wilson - 2018 - Analysis 78 (1):117-128.
  30. added 2018-03-05
    Ross Cameron’s The Moving Spotlight.Theodore Sider - 2017 - Analysis 77 (4):788-799.
    According to Ross Cameron's version of the moving spotlight theory of time, (1) Past and future entities exist; (2) the properties and relations they have are those they have now; but nevertheless (3) there are no fundamental past- or future-tensed facts; instead, tensed facts are made true by fundamental facts about the possession of temporal distributional properties and facts about how old things are. I argue that the account isn't sufficiently distinct from the B-theory to fit the usual A-theorist's tastes (...)
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  31. added 2018-02-20
    Fundamentality and Time’s Arrow.Christian Loew - 2018 - Philosophy of Science 85 (3):483-500.
    The distribution of matter in our universe is strikingly time asymmetric. Most famously, the Second Law of Thermodynamics says that entropy tends to increase toward the future but not toward the past. But what explains this time-asymmetric distribution of matter? In this paper, I explore the idea that time itself has a direction by drawing from recent work on grounding and metaphysical fundamentality. I will argue that positing such a direction of time, in addition to time-asymmetric boundary conditions, enables a (...)
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  32. added 2018-02-17
    The Promise of a New Past.Samuel Lebens & Tyron Goldschmidt - 2017 - Philosophers' Imprint 17:1-25.
    In light of Jewish tradition and the metaphysics of time, we argue that God can and will change the past. The argument makes for a new answer to the problem of evil and a new theory of atonement.
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  33. added 2017-09-07
    What is Temporal Ontology?Natalja Deng - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (3):793-807.
    Temporal ontology is the part of ontology involving the rival positions of presentism, eternalism, and the growing block theory. While this much is clear, it’s surprisingly difficult to elucidate the substance of the disagreement between presentists and eternalists. Certain events happened that are not happening now; what is it to disagree about whether these events exist? In spite of widespread suspicion concerning the status and methods of analytic metaphysics, skeptics’ doubts about this debate have not generally been heeded, neither by (...)
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  34. added 2017-06-08
    Exclusive Disjunctivism – Presentness Without Simultaneity in Special Relativity.Nihel Jhou - 2017 - Analysis 77 (3):541-550.
    A-theoretic presentness is commonly regarded as non-solipsist and non-relative. The non-solipsism of a non-relative, A-theoretic presentness requires at least two space-like separated things to be present simpliciter together – this co-presentness further implies the global, non-relative, non-conventional simultaneity of them. Yet, this implication clashes with the general view that there is no global, non-relative, non-conventional simultaneity in Minkowski space-time. In order to resolve this conflict, this paper explores the possibility that the non-solipsism of a non-relative, A-theoretic presentness does not require (...)
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  35. added 2017-05-20
    The Experience of Temporal Passage.Akiko M. Frischhut - 2013 - Dissertation, University of Geneva and University of Glasgow
    The project of my dissertation was to advance the metaphysical debate about temporal passage, by relating it to debates about the perceptual experience of time and change. It seems true that we experience temporal passage, even if there is disagreement whether time actually passes, or what temporal passage consists in. This appears to give the defender of dynamic time an advantage in accounting for our experience. I challenge this by arguing that no major account of temporal perception can accommodate experiences (...)
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  36. added 2017-05-12
    What Is Time?M. Oreste Fiocco - 2017 - Manuscrito 40 (1):43-65.
    In this paper, I answer the question of what time is. First, however, I consider why one might ask this question and what exactly it is asking. The latter consideration reveals that in order to answer the question, one must first engage in a more basic investigation of what a thing, anything at all, is. Such radical investigation requires a special methodology. After briefly characterizing this methodology, I show how it can be employed to answer the titular question. This answer (...)
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  37. added 2017-03-22
    The Rights of Future Persons and the Ontology of Time.Aaron M. Griffith - 2017 - Journal of Social Philosophy 48 (1):58-70.
    Many are committed to the idea that the present generation has obligations to future generations, for example, obligations to preserve the environment and certain natural resources for those generations. However, some philosophers want to explain why we have these obligations in terms of correlative rights that future persons have against persons in the present. Attributing such rights to future persons is controversial, for there seem to be compelling arguments against the position. According to the “nonexistence” argument, future persons cannot have (...)
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  38. added 2016-10-28
    The Unique Groundability of Temporal Facts.John Cusbert & Kristie Millier - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (1).
    The A-theory and the B-theory advance competing claims about how time is grounded. The A-theory says that A-facts are more fundamental in grounding time than are B-facts, and the B-theory says the reverse. We argue that whichever theory is true of the actual world is also true of all possible worlds containing time. We do this by arguing that time is uniquely groundable: however time is actually grounded, it is necessarily grounded in that way. It follows that if either the (...)
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  39. added 2016-09-19
    Relationism About Time and Temporal Vacua.Matteo Morganti - 2017 - Philosophy 92 (1):77-95.
    A critical discussion of Shoemaker's argument for the possibility of time without change, intended as an argument against relationist conceptions of time. A relational view of time is proposed based on the primitive identity of events (or whatever entities are the basic subjects of change and lack thereof).
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  40. added 2016-09-05
    The Category of Occurrent Continuants.Rowland Stout - 2016 - Mind 125 (497):41-62.
    Arguing first that the best way to understand what a continuant is is as something that primarily has its properties at a time rather than atemporally, the paper then defends the idea that there are occurrent continuants. These are things that were, are, or will be happening—like the ongoing process of someone reading or my writing this paper, for instance. A recently popular philosophical view of process is as something that is referred to with mass nouns and not count nouns. (...)
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  41. added 2016-08-26
    A Taxonomy of Views About Time in Buddhist and Western Philosophy.Kristie Miller - 2017 - Philosophy East and West 67 (3):763-782.
    We find the claim that time is not real in both western and eastern philosophical traditions. In what follows I will call the view that time does not exist temporal error theory. Temporal error theory was made famous in western analytic philosophy in the early 1900s by John McTaggart (1908) and, in much the same tradition, temporal error theory was subsequently defended by Gödel (1949). The idea that time is not real, however, stretches back much further than that. It is (...)
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  42. added 2016-03-09
    Accounting for Experiences as of Passage: Why Topology Isn’T Enough.Graeme A. Forbes - 2014 - Topoi 34 (1):187-194.
    Time appears to us to pass. Some philosophers think that we should account for these experiences by appeal to change in what there unrestrictedly is . I argue that such an appeal can only be the beginning of an account of passage. To show this, I consider a minimal type of view—a purely topological view—that attempts to account for experiences as of passage by an appeal to ontological change and topological features of the present. I argue that, if ontological change (...)
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  43. added 2016-03-01
    The Moving Spotlight Lights, and Having Lit, Moves On: Ross Cameron: The Moving Spotlight. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 240pp, $60.00 HB.Kristie Miller - 2016 - Metascience (2):1-5.
    Ross Cameron’s the moving spotlight reminds me a bit of Pirates of the Caribbean. Although there are no pirates, it’s a rip roaring swashbuckling adventure. It’s a wild ride. Truth be told, many of us will probably conclude that it’s no more plausible an account of our world than is Pirates of the Caribbean a faithful depiction of piracy. I’m not a moving spotlight theorist. There aren’t many of them out there. I’m not even an A-theorist, though there are plenty (...)
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  44. added 2016-01-16
    Les propriétés du vide et de l’espace-temps.Baptiste Le Bihan - 2016 - Philosophiques 43 (1):49-66.
    Les propriétés matérielles sont généralement appréhendées comme les propriétés d’une substance matérielle : cette chemise possède la propriété d’être bleue, cette chaussure la propriété d’être en bon état. Pourtant, on peut trouver plusieurs raisons de douter que les propriétés soient nécessairement les propriétés d’une substance matérielle, à la fois en métaphysique avec la théorie du faisceau, et en physique contemporaine à travers les notions d’énergie du vide et de champ. Or, si les propriétés ne sont pas les propriétés de substances (...)
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  45. added 2016-01-05
    Still Foes: Benovsky on Relationism and Substantivalism.Claudio Mazzola - 2016 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 6 (2):247-260.
    It is widely believed that relationism cannot make room for the possibility of intervals of time during which no changes occur. Benovsky has recently challenged this belief, arguing that relationists can account for the possibility of changeless time in much the same way as substantivalists do, thereby concluding that the two views are interchangeable for all theoretical purposes. This paper intends to defend the meaningfulness of the traditional dispute between substantivalists and relationists, by contending that the particular form of relationism (...)
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  46. added 2015-10-26
    Tiempo.Juan Jose Sanguineti - 2015 - Diccionario Interdisciplinar Austral.
    En esta voz se considera el tiempo como una dimensión de la realidad física que se manifiesta en la percepción de las cosas en su devenir y cuya realidad ontológica se apoya en las transformaciones naturales. Primeramente se afronta la temática del tiempo físico y sus características en una perspectiva filosófica. Se tocan cuestiones fundamentales como el estatuto ontológico del presente/pasado/futuro, la realidad o irrealidad del instante, la simultaneidad, la unidad y pluralidad de tiempos, la dirección temporal (flecha irreversible del (...)
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  47. added 2015-10-14
    The Moving Spotlight: An Essay on Time and Ontology.Ross P. Cameron - 2015 - Oxford University Press.
    Ross P. Cameron argues that the flow of time is a genuine feature of reality. He suggests that the best version of the A-Theory is a version of the Moving Spotlight view, according to which past and future beings are real, but there is nonetheless an objectively privileged present. Cameron argues that the Moving Spotlight theory should be viewed as having more in common with Presentism than with the B-Theory. Furthermore, it provides the best account of truthmakers for claims about (...)
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  48. added 2015-10-12
    Our Concept of Time.Sam Baron & Kristie Miller - 2015 - In B. Mölder, Arstila & P. Ohrstrom (eds.), Philosophy and Psychology of Time. Springer. pp. 29-52.
    In this chapter we argue that our concept of time is a functional concept. We argue that our concept of time is such that time is whatever it is that plays the time role, and we spell out what we take the time role to consist in. We evaluate this proposal against a number of other analyses of our concept of time, and argue that it better explains various features of our dispositions as speakers and our practices as agents.
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  49. added 2015-09-16
    Is Descartes a Temporal Atomist?Ken Levy - 2005 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 13 (4):627 – 674.
  50. added 2015-09-02
    On Whether B-Theoretic Atheists Should Fear Death.Natalja Deng - 2015 - Philosophia 43 (4):1011-1021.
    In this paper I revisit a dispute between Mikel Burley and Robin Le Poidevin about whether or not the B-theory of time can give its adherents any reason to be less afraid of death. In ‘Should a B-theoretic atheist fear death?’, Burley argues that even on Le Poidevin’s understanding of the B-theory, atheists shouldn’t be comforted. His reason is that the prevalent B-theoretic account of our attitudes towards the past and future precludes treating our fear of death as unwarranted. I (...)
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