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Indeterminism is a modal notion: branching spacetimes and Earman’s pruning

Placek, Tomasz and Belnap, Nuel (2011) Indeterminism is a modal notion: branching spacetimes and Earman’s pruning. [Published Article]

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    Abstract

    The paper defends an Aristotelian notion of indeterminism, as rigorously formulated in the framework of branching space-times (BST) of Belnap (1992), against criticism by Earman’s (2008) based on a model-theoretic characterization of indeterminism. It delineates BST branching against the background provided by Earman’s (2008) distinction between individual versus ensemble branching. Partly in order to motivate our responses to Earman, it describes a construction of physically motivated BST models, in which histories are isomorphic to Minkowski spacetime. Finally it responds to Earman’s criticisms leveled against BST by addressing a topological issue, the question of an actual future, the past/future asymmetry, and some semantical questions.


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    Item Type: Published Article
    Keywords: determinism, spacetime, branching space-times
    Subjects: General Issues > Determinism/Indeterminism
    Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
    Depositing User: Tomasz Placek
    Date Deposited: 28 May 2011 18:04
    Last Modified: 28 May 2011 18:04
    Item ID: 8631
    Journal or Publication Title: Synthese
    Publisher: Springer (Springer Science+Business Media B.V.)
    Official URL: http://www.springerlink.com/content/n77521u7467n02...
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/8631

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