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A Dilemma for Eternalists


In this discussion I argue that, given the possibility of travel to the past, eternalists face a dilemma. They must choose between fatalism and the denial of an intuitive claim about what a traveller to the past cannot do. The eternalist should deny this seemingly intuitive claim which is in fact a version of fatalism about the past.

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  1. I am grateful to Alan Hajek, Hugh Rice, Ryan Wasserman, and an audience at ANU, for useful discussion of this topic.


  • Lewis, D. (1976). The Paradoxes of Time Travel. American Philosophical Quarterly, 13 (1), 145–152.

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Correspondence to Brian Garrett.

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Garrett, B. A Dilemma for Eternalists. Philosophia 45, 1735–1739 (2017).

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  • Eternalism
  • Time Travel
  • David Lewis
  • Fatalism