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The fate of causal structure under time reversal

Williams, Porter (2022) The fate of causal structure under time reversal. [Preprint]

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Abstract

What happens to the causal structure of a world when time is reversed? At first glance it seems there are two possible answers: the causal relations are reversed, or they are not. I argue that neither of these answers is correct: we should either deny that time-reversed worlds have causal relations at all, or deny that causal concepts developed in the actual world are reliable guides to the causal structure of time-reversed worlds. The first option is motivated by the instability under intervention of time-reversed dynamical evolutions. The second option is motivated by a recognition of how contingent structural features of the actual world shape, and license the application of, our causal concepts and reasoning strategies.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Williams, Porterporterwi@usc.edu0000-0003-0242-4045
Additional Information: Forthcoming in a special issue on themes from Woodward's paper: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/17419/
Keywords: Causation, Interventionism, Time Reversal
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
Specific Sciences > Physics
Depositing User: Porter Williams
Date Deposited: 16 Apr 2022 04:16
Last Modified: 16 Apr 2022 04:16
Item ID: 20463
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
Specific Sciences > Physics
Date: April 2022
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/20463

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