Making Sense of the Growing Block View

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Abstract

In this paper, I try to make sense of the growing block view using Kit Fine’s three-fold classification of A-theoretic views of time. I begin by motivating the endeavor of making sense of the growing block view by examining John Earman’s project in ‘Reassessing the prospects for a growing block model of the universe’ (section 2). Next, I review Fine’s reconstruction of McTaggart’s argument and its accompanying three-fold classification of A-theoretic views (section 3). I then consider three interpretations of Earman’s growing block model: the hybrid growing block (section 4), the purely tensed growing block (section 5), and Michael Tooley’s growing block (section 6). I argue for three claims. First, Finean ‘standard’ versions of these views are less congenial to the growing blocker than ‘non-standard’ ones. Second, the hybrid view is problematic on either version. And third, ‘non-standard’ versions are not fully intelligible. I provide further support for the first and third of these claims and explain why I take them to support a minimal account of passage as succession, which undercuts some of the motivation for Earman’s project (section 7). Lastly, I answer three objections (section 8).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1113-1127
Number of pages15
JournalPhilosophia (United States)
Volume45
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Sep 1

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  • Philosophy

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title = "Making Sense of the Growing Block View",
abstract = "In this paper, I try to make sense of the growing block view using Kit Fine’s three-fold classification of A-theoretic views of time. I begin by motivating the endeavor of making sense of the growing block view by examining John Earman’s project in ‘Reassessing the prospects for a growing block model of the universe’ (section 2). Next, I review Fine’s reconstruction of McTaggart’s argument and its accompanying three-fold classification of A-theoretic views (section 3). I then consider three interpretations of Earman’s growing block model: the hybrid growing block (section 4), the purely tensed growing block (section 5), and Michael Tooley’s growing block (section 6). I argue for three claims. First, Finean ‘standard’ versions of these views are less congenial to the growing blocker than ‘non-standard’ ones. Second, the hybrid view is problematic on either version. And third, ‘non-standard’ versions are not fully intelligible. I provide further support for the first and third of these claims and explain why I take them to support a minimal account of passage as succession, which undercuts some of the motivation for Earman’s project (section 7). Lastly, I answer three objections (section 8).",
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Making Sense of the Growing Block View. / Deng, Natalja.

In: Philosophia (United States), Vol. 45, No. 3, 01.09.2017, p. 1113-1127.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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