A Two-Dimensional Passage Model of Time for Time Travel
Meiland (Jack W.)
Source: Philosophical Studies, Vol. 26, No. 3/4 (Nov., 1974), pp. 153-173
Paper - Abstract

Paper StatisticsBooks / Papers Citing this PaperNotes Citing this PaperColour-ConventionsDisclaimer

Author’s Abstract

  1. Some philosophers have held that time travel1 of a certain type is logically impossible. The type of time travel2 in question is crudely exemplified by the following: the Time Traveller3 gets into his time machine4, throws some switches, and is transported through time back to the time of the French Revolution. This variety of time travel5 was the basis of H. G. Wells' well-known and very popular novel The Time Machine, so I will call it 'Wellsian time travel6'. Philosophers have given many different arguments for the logical impossibility of Wellsian time travel7, some of them dependent on what these philosophers take to be the nature of time and others dependent on such things as the criteria of identity for persons.
  2. In this paper I want to develop a theory or a model of time which will handle at least some of the objections often raised to Wellsian time travel8. This model is a passage model of time, that is, a model which allows motion through time.
  3. I will discuss the chief competitor of the passage theory - the so-called manifold theory - in Section 3. After stating the objections to Wellsian time travel9 and my reply to them in the form of my model of time, I will make some comments on the nature and purpose of such speculations about time, the possibility of changing the past, and the alleged paradoxical situations that are often said to be made possible by time travel10.

  1. Introduction
  2. The Williams Objection
  3. An Alternative Account Of Putative Time Travel11
  4. The Harrison Objection
  5. The Past As A Continuant
  6. The Reply To The Williams Objection
  7. Does Time Travel12 Take Time?
  8. The Relativity Of Past, Present, And Future
  9. Compound Temporal Designations
  10. The Fixed And Unchanging Character Of The Past On The Two-Dimensional Theory Of Time
  11. Changes In The Past
  12. Other Objections To Wellsian Time Travel13 And The Reply To Them

Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)

  1. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2019
  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)

© Theo Todman, June 2007 - Dec 2019. Please address any comments on this page to theo@theotodman.com. File output:
Website Maintenance Dashboard
Return to Top of this Page Return to Theo Todman's Philosophy Page Return to Theo Todman's Home Page