In Adrian Bardon & Heather Dyke (eds.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Time. Blackwell (2013)
AbstractThinking about time travel is an entertaining way to explore how to understand time and its location in the broad conceptual landscape that includes causation, fate, action, possibility, experience, and reality. It is uncontroversial that time travel towards the future exists, and time travel to the past is generally recognized as permitted by Einstein’s general theory of relativity, though no one knows yet whether nature truly allows it. Coherent time travel stories have added flair to traditional debates over the metaphysical status of the past, the reality of temporal passage, and the existence of free will. Moreover, plausible models of time travel and time machines can be used to investigate the subtle relation between space-time structure and causality. It surveys some philosophical issues concerning time travel and should serves as a quick introduction. It includes a new and improved way to define a time machine.
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