Why Special Relativity is a Problem for the A-Theory

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Neither special nor general relativity make any use of a notion of absolute simultaneity. Since A-Theories about time do make use of such a notion, it is natural to suspect that relativity and A-Theory are inconsistent. Many authors have argued that they are in fact not inconsistent, and I agree with that diagnosis here. But that doesn't mean, as these authors seem to think, that A-Theory and relativity are happy bedfellows. I argue that relativity gives us good reason to reject the A-Theory, even though strict inconsistency isn't that reason.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)385-406
Number of pages22
JournalPhilosophical Quarterly
Volume70
Issue number279
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020

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Keywords

  • A-Theory
  • growing block
  • moving spotlight
  • presentism
  • relativity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy

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