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Temporal Fictionalism for a Timeless World

Baron, Sam; Miller, Kristie; Tallant, Jonathan


Sam Baron

Kristie Miller


Current debate in the metaphysics of time ordinarily assumes that we should be realists about time. Recently, however, a number of physicists and philosophers of physics have proposed that time will play no role in a completed theory of quantum gravity. This paper defends fictionalism about temporal thought, on the supposition that our world is timeless. We argue that, in the face of timeless physical theories, realism about temporal thought is unsustainable: some kind of anti-realism must be adopted. We go on to provide an argument against eliminativism about temporal thought. While it doesn't follow from this argument that fictionalism about temporal thought is true, we suggest that this nonetheless shows that fictionalism should be regarded as the preferred view.


Baron, S., Miller, K., & Tallant, J. (2021). Temporal Fictionalism for a Timeless World. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 102(2), 281-301.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 26, 2019
Online Publication Date Sep 26, 2019
Publication Date 2021-03
Deposit Date Jul 2, 2019
Publicly Available Date Sep 27, 2021
Journal Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
Print ISSN 0031-8205
Electronic ISSN 1933-1592
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 102
Issue 2
Pages 281-301
Keywords Philosophy; History and Philosophy of Science
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Baron, S, Miller, K, Tallant, J. Temporal Fictionalism for a Timeless World. Philos Phenomenol Res. 2019; 00: 1– 21, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions


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