, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 617-619,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 27 Jun 2012

Time, space, spacetime

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Anyone who has ever made an attempt to get acquainted with the philosophy of time, starting with McTaggart’s classic “The Unreality of Time”, will know how easy it is to become bewildered by the subject. Typically, papers in this area are full of arguments that one by one strike the reader as logically compelling or at least plausible (“an event cannot be both future and past”), whereas nevertheless the conclusions one is led to (“time is unreal”; “according to relativity there is no real change”; etc.) strike one as moot at best. It is inevitable to feel a desire for a sober and lucid overview that puts all the relevant themes and premises in order, analyses their precise content, and identifies their strengths and weaknesses. This urge for clarity and impartial assessment can be satisfied since 2001, when Barry Dainton’s “Time and Space” first appeared. A second, revised edition of this important book has now come out.

Dainton’s book systematically explores the metaphysics and physics ...