GöDel Meets Einstein: Time Travel in the GöDel Universe [Book Review]

Philosophical Review 111 (1):148-152 (2002)
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In 1949, Kurt Gödel found a solution to the field equations of general relativity that described a spacetime with some unusual properties. This “Gödel universe” permitted “closed timelike curves,” hence a kind of time travel, and it did not admit of decomposition into successive moments of time. In the same year, he published “A Remark about the Relationship between Relativity Theory and Idealistic Philosophy”, in which he used certain properties of this solution to argue for a kind of temporal idealism, whereby “change [is] an illusion or an appearance due to our special mode of perception”. The paper is short and to the point, but the argument has usually been regarded as fatally flawed. In his Gödel Meets Einstein: Time Travel in the Gödel Universe, Palle Yourgrau makes a case for Gödel.



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Steve Weinstein
University of Waterloo

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References found in this work

How to teach special relativity.John S. Bell - 1976 - Progress in Scientific Culture 1.
Time, Tense and Causation.Quentin Smith & Michael Tooley - 1999 - Philosophical Review 108 (1):123.

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