On Using the Multiverse to Avoid the Paradoxes of Time Travel
Abbruzzese (John)
Source: Analysis, Vol. 61, No. 1 (Jan., 2001), pp. 36-38
Paper - Abstract

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Introductory Paragraph

    To avoid the unpalatable consequences of unidimensional time travel1 – the celebrated paradoxes of preventing one's own birth, etc. – it might seem reasonable to appeal instead to the theory of the multiverse. On that theory, rather than having a time traveller2, S, journey into the past of his own universe (call it 'a') and thereby court the apparent contradictions, we can instead posit an alternative universe ('b') as his proper destination. The event of S's departing the year 2001 for the year 1001 (say) will therefore be more precisely described as S's leaving his own universe and time, 2001a, and travelling not to 1001a, the ancestor of his own time, but rather to 1001b, i.e., the year 1001 in another universe. It follows, say the advocates of the multiverse, that any action S undertakes after travelling to the past occurs in an alternative universe and so cannot affect – and, a fortiori, contradict – the events of his own.

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