On relativity theory and openness of the future

Philosophy of Science 58 (2):147-167 (1991)
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Abstract

It has been repeatedly argued, most recently by Nicholas Maxwell, that the special theory of relativity is incompatible with the view that the future is in some degree undetermined; and Maxwell contends that this is a reason to reject that theory. In the present paper, an analysis is offered of the notion of indeterminateness (or "becoming") that is uniquely appropriate to the special theory of relativity, in the light of a set of natural conditions upon such a notion; and reasons are given for regarding this conception as (not just formally consistent with relativity theory, but also) philosophically reasonable. The bearings upon Maxwell's program for quantum theory are briefly considered

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Howard Stein
University of Chicago

Citations of this work

Nothing to Come: A Defence of the Growing Block Theory of Time.Fabrice Correia & Sven Rosenkranz - 2018 - Cham, Switzerland: Springer Verlag. Edited by Sven Rosenkranz.
Branching space-time.Nuel Belnap - 1992 - Synthese 92 (3):385 - 434.
Temporal B-Coming: Passage without Presentness.Lisa Leininger - 2021 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (1):130-147.

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References found in this work

Time and physical geometry.Hilary Putnam - 1967 - Journal of Philosophy 64 (8):240-247.
On Einstein--Minkowski space--time.Howard Stein - 1968 - Journal of Philosophy 65 (1):5-23.
Newtonian space-time.Howard Stein - 1967 - Texas Quarterly 10 (3):174--200.

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