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Scholars Day 2006, Wednesday, April 12

Special Relativity and Presentism

According to presentism only the present exists as real, that is to say, that reality consists of all but only the events that occur exactly simultaneously to the present. According to special relativity, the simultaneity of events is not an absolute fact, but is relative to frames of reference, that is to say that two observers might disagree about the sequence of certain events, or even the existence of events due to their different frames of reference. Relativity seems to rule out the possibility of absolute simultaneity. Presentism implies that reality is that which is absolutely simultaneous with the present. This paper is intended to be a basic explication of the two views, the apparent contradicition, and some solutions that have been discussed.

Presenter: Adrian Bosarge (Undergraduate Student)
Topic: Philosophy
Location: 125 Hartwell
Time: 4:15 pm (Session V)