Time Travel

  • Stephen Webb
Part of the Science and Fiction book series (SCIFICT)


Ah, time travel. Of all the themes in science fiction, this is my favorite. As with space voyages and aliens I was primed to think about time travel from a young age. On television, the Time Lord Dr Who (1963–present) flitted between eras as easily as he moved through space; in The Time Tunnel (1966–67) two scientists, lost in the fourth dimension, got involved in historical exploits; and the best-ever episode of Star Trek, Harlan Ellison’s “The City on the Edge of Forever” (1967), had Kirk and Co. grapple with the paradoxes of travel into the past. As for films, I watched George Pal’s The Time Machine (1960) as a child and was blown away by its depiction of the future. The novel on which the film was based still has the same effect on me. When I started to read books there was the Abrashkin and Williams classic Danny Dunn, Time Traveler (1963) and Philippa Pearce’s Tom’s Midnight Garden (1958) and Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time (1963)… these tales were guaranteed to stoke an interest in the properties of time. And when I graduated to adult science fiction I discovered that my favorite authors—Asimov, Heinlein et al.—had all written stories highlighting just how slippery the concept of time could be. Other authors used the conceit to investigate notions of free will, determinism, and causality—concepts that philosophers are still grappling with. What isn’t there to love about time travel stories?


Black Hole Time Travel Light Cone Time Machine Science Fiction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen Webb
    • 1
  1. 1.DCQEUniversity of PortsmouthPortsmouthUK

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