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Seeing the FutureTheoretical Perspectives on Future-Oriented Mental Time Travel$
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Kourken Michaelian, Stanley B. Klein, and Karl K. Szpunar

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190241537

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190241537.001.0001

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Temporal Perspectives In Imagination

Temporal Perspectives In Imagination

On the Nature and Value of Imagining the Future

Chapter:
(p.217) 11 Temporal Perspectives In Imagination
Source:
Seeing the Future
Author(s):

Dorothea Debus

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190241537.003.0011

Chapter 11 considers a specific form of future-directed mental time travel, namely cases in which one sensorily imagines (or “S-imagines”) future events, that is, cases in which a subject’s imagination of a future event has experiential characteristics. It addresses two questions: (1) How can one account for the nature of cases in which subjects S-imagine future events? (2) What is the value of the ability to S-imagine future events? The author shows how one can account for the specific temporal orientation of S-imaginations of future events, and develops the claim that from the subject’s own point of view at the time of S-imagining a future event, the future is open. The author shows that the ability to S-imagine future events can have great instrumental value or disvalue, because subjects can, and sometimes do, put their ability to S-imagine future events to good or bad use and can thereby shape the future for the better, or for the worse.

Keywords:   imagination, future, future-directed mental time travel, imagination, experiential

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