PhilSci Archive

The Metaphysics of Emergent Spacetime Theories

Martens, Niels C.M. (2019) The Metaphysics of Emergent Spacetime Theories. Philosophy Compass, 14 (7).

Martens 2019 - PhilSci Archive version.pdf

Download (460kB) | Preview


The debate concerning the ontological status of spacetime is standardly construed as a dilemma between substantivalism and relationalism. I argue that a trilemma is more appropriate, emergent spacetime theories being the third category. Traditional philosophical arguments do not distinguish between emergent spacetime and substantivalism. It is arguments from physics that suggest giving up substantivalism in favour of emergent spacetime theories. The remaining new dilemma is between emergent spacetime and relationalism. I provide a list of questions, which one should consider when discussing emergent spacetime theories, and apply them to a quantum superfluid toy model of emergent spacetime.

Export/Citation: EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
Social Networking:
Share |

Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Martens, Niels C.M.martensniels@gmail.com0000-0002-2839-1387
Keywords: Emergent spacetime, substantivalism, relationalism
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
Specific Sciences > Physics
Depositing User: Dr Niels C.M. Martens
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2021 05:21
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2021 05:21
Item ID: 19985
Journal or Publication Title: Philosophy Compass
Publisher: Wiley
Official URL:
DOI or Unique Handle:
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
Specific Sciences > Physics
Date: July 2019
Volume: 14
Number: 7

Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item