Presentism (Craig Bourne)
We say that time ‘flows’. We mean that there is a sense in which the present moment is continually changing – a moment which seems to mark a fundamental asymmetry between times earlier than it and times later than it. We say that the past is ‘fixed’ but the future is ‘open’. We dread the future, not the past. We remember the past, not the future. We plan for the future, not the past; and we try to bring about those plans for the future in the way we do not try to bring about things for the past. We do all of this from our location in the present: we do not think we are located at any other time. Thus, the present seems to have an ontological privilege among times. Yet, relativity theory and certain claims in contemporary metaphysics suggest a view of time – ‘eternalism’ – according to which no time is privileged: all times are ontologically equal. How to decide between the eternalist conception of time and the presentist conception has been the driving force behind work on the nature of time since the beginning of the 20th century. But despite their fundamental differences, there is no compelling reason to adopt one conception of time over the other. We should be agnostic.
Pour citer cette ressource :
Craig Bourne, "Presentism (Craig Bourne)", La Clé des Langues [en ligne], Lyon, ENS de LYON/DGESCO (ISSN 2107-7029), avril 2014. Consulté le 07/12/2023. URL: https://cle.ens-lyon.fr/anglais/litterature/entretiens-et-textes-inedits/presentism-craig-bourne-