Authors
Douglas Kutach
Rutgers University - New Brunswick (PhD)
Abstract
Backtracking influence is influence that zigzags in time. For example, backtracking influence exists when an event E_1 makes an event E_2 more likely by way of a nomic connection that goes from E_1 back in time to an event C and then forward in time to E_2. I contend that in our local region of spacetime, at least, backtracking influence is redundant in the sense that any existing backtracking influence exerted by E_1 on E_2 is equivalent to E_1's temporally direct influence on E_2. I prove the redundancy of backtracking influence using several plausible physical principles without assuming any fundamental temporal or causal asymmetry. This explanation can play a prominent role in an account of why causation appears to be objectively asymmetric regardless of whether the fundamental laws are symmetric.
Keywords backward causation  asymmetry of time  causal asymmetry  backtracking counterfactuals  backtracking influence
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DOI 10.1080/02698595.2011.552418
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References found in this work BETA

The Metaphysics Within Physics.Tim Maudlin - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
Time and Chance.David Z. Albert - 2000 - Harvard University Press.
The Metaphysics within Physics.[author unknown] - 2007 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 69 (3):610-611.
Time and Chance.S. French - 2005 - Mind 114 (453):113-116.

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Citations of this work BETA

Time Travel and Time Machines.Douglas Kutach - 2013 - In Adrian Bardon & Heather Dyke (eds.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Time. Blackwell.

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