Chapter

 Do space and time exist?

Frank Arntzenius

in Space, Time, and Stuff

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199696604
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738333 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199696604.003.0005
 Do space and time exist?

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Substantivalism is the view that space and time exist in addition to particles and fields. Relationism is the view that only particles and fields exist, which stand in certain spatio-temporal relations. The ‘Leibniz-shift’ argument and the related ‘hole-argument’ in favour of relationism are presented and rejected, both in the context of Newtonian physics and relativistic physics. Arguments in favour of substantivalism are given which are based on considerations of determinism, locality, parity non-conservation, and simplicity. Finally, supersubstantivalism -the idea that only space and time exist- is advocated.

Keywords: determinism; newtonian physics; locality; parity; relationism; relativistic physics; substantivalism

Chapter.  15924 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Metaphysics

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