This is the Introduction to a Book in progress about McTaggart’s Argument for the Unreality of Time. The book is the result of a three year project in which I have attempted to do an overview of everything ever written in English about the argument; summarise and categorise all the various objections and treatments of the argument, as well as arriving at a better understanding of the argument itself. In the Introduction I present a timeline of the origins of the argument and the debate it generated, as well as the often overlooked pre-history of its inception. The reader is warned that in this book it will be argued that McTaggart’s argument was wrongly received as a stand-alone argument that had nothing to do with his idealist metaphysics. It is for this reason the argument has been received as an attempt to reveal a contradiction inherent in the appearance of time itself. This is not how McTaggart himself presents the argument. In his view, the contradiction emerges out of a conflict between the conception of Reality as Absolute vs. Temporal. With his idealist metaphysics in mind – in which he elucidates his idea of Reality as Absolute – the argument comes across as an unambiguous deductive argument, leading from clear premises towards a contradiction. However, we need not accept the premises, and therefore need not accept the conclusion.
This is a draft for the 2nd Chapter of my book on McTaggart’s Paradox. In this chapter I challenge the view that McTaggart’s argument for the unreality of time does not rely on major metaphysical assumptions. First, by elucidating McTaggar’ts methodological approach to Metaphysics generally and how this approach is reflected in the structure of The Nature of Existence. Second, by describing the metaphysical assumptions he explicitly claimed the argument relied on.
This is a draft for the 3rd Chapter of my book on McTaggart’s Paradox. In this chapter I go through the argument step by step, carefully elucidating the connections to the metaphysical assumptions outlined in Chapter 2.
This is a draft of the 4th Chapter of my Book in progress about McTaggart’s argument for the unreality of time. This chapter offers a brief characterisation of the C series and its role in McTaggart’s thinking. The chapter particularly addresses the popular misconception that the C series is what you get if you strip away the temporal features of the B series.