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Three facets of time-reversal symmetry

Authors
  • Lopez, Cristian1
  • 1 Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve, 1348, Belgium , Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium)
Type
Published Article
Journal
European Journal for Philosophy of Science
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Publication Date
May 17, 2021
Volume
11
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s13194-021-00355-8
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

The notion of time reversal has caused some recent controversy in philosophy of physics. The debate has mainly put the focus on how the concept of time reversal should be formally implemented across different physical theories and models, as if time reversal were a single, unified concept that physical theories should capture. In this paper, I shift the focus of the debate and defend that the concept of time reversal involves at least three facets, where each of them gives rise to opposing views. In particular, I submit that any account of time reversal presupposes (explicitly or implicitly) modal, metaphysical, and heuristic facets. The comprehension of this multi-faceted nature of time reversal, I conclude, shows that time reversal can be coherently said in many ways, suggesting a disunified concept.

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