Aristotle on the Order and Direction of Time

Apeiron 42 (1):49-78 (2009)
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This paper defends Aristotle’s project of deriving the order of time from the order of change in Physics 4.11, against the objection that it contains a vicious circularity arising from the assumption that we cannot specify the direction of a change without invoking the temporal relations of its stages. It considers and rejects a solution to this objection proposed by Ursula Coope, and proposes an alternative solution. It also considers the related problem of how the temporal orders and directions derived from individual changes can together constitute a single, globally consistent order and direction of time.

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John Bowin
University of California, Santa Cruz


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