Term: Winter 2015
This course examines the development of our metaphysical and scientific understanding of space, time and motion from the ancient Greeks to the present day. We begin with Plato and Euclid. We then focus on the classical debate about the reality of space in the work of Newton, Leibniz, Berkeley and Mach. Finally, we study the impact of the conventionalist and relativistic theories of Poincaré and Einstein. Space and time are of interest not only as one of the central topics in metaphysics, but also as an exemplar of how research in metaphysics is done.
This course is cross-listed with PHIL*6210.
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