Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

Time Travel, Coincidences and Counterfactuals

Theodore Sider
Philosophical Studies: An International Journal for Philosophy in the Analytic Tradition
Vol. 110, No. 2 (Aug., 2002), pp. 115-138
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4321289
Page Count: 24
  • Download ($43.95)
  • Cite this Item
Time Travel, Coincidences and Counterfactuals
Preview not available

Abstract

In no possible world does a time traveler succeed in killing her earlier self before she ever enters a time machine. So if many, many time travelers went back in time trying to kill their unprotected former selves, the time travelers would fail in many strange, "coincidental" ways, slipping on banana peels, killing the wrong victim, and so on. Such cases produce doubts about time travel. How could "coincidences" be guaranteed to happen? And wouldn't the certainty of coincidental failure imply that time travelers are not free to kill their earlier selves? But if so, what would inhibit their freedom? Despite initial appearances, these and other doubts may be answered: the possibility of time travel survives yet another challenge.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
[115]
    [115]
  • Thumbnail: Page 
116
    116
  • Thumbnail: Page 
117
    117
  • Thumbnail: Page 
118
    118
  • Thumbnail: Page 
119
    119
  • Thumbnail: Page 
120
    120
  • Thumbnail: Page 
121
    121
  • Thumbnail: Page 
122
    122
  • Thumbnail: Page 
123
    123
  • Thumbnail: Page 
124
    124
  • Thumbnail: Page 
125
    125
  • Thumbnail: Page 
126
    126
  • Thumbnail: Page 
127
    127
  • Thumbnail: Page 
128
    128
  • Thumbnail: Page 
129
    129
  • Thumbnail: Page 
130
    130
  • Thumbnail: Page 
131
    131
  • Thumbnail: Page 
132
    132
  • Thumbnail: Page 
133
    133
  • Thumbnail: Page 
134
    134
  • Thumbnail: Page 
135
    135
  • Thumbnail: Page 
136
    136
  • Thumbnail: Page 
137
    137
  • Thumbnail: Page 
138
    138