On Stages, Worms, and Relativity
Balashov (Yuri)
Source: Time, Reality, and Experience, Craig Callender, ed. Cambridge University Press, 2002
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Author’s Abstract

    Four-dimensionalism, or perdurantism, the view that temporally extended objects persist through time by having (spatio-)temporal parts or stages, includes two varieties, the worm theory and the stage theory1. According to the worm theory, perduring objects are four-dimensional wholes occupying determinate regions of spacetime and having temporal parts, or stages, each of them confined to a particular time. The stage theorist, however, claims, not that perduring objects have stages, but that the fundamental entities of the perdurantist ontology are stages. I argue that considerations of special relativity favor the worm theory over the stage theory2.

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