26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on February 8, 2008
I am currently writing a novel that includes time-travel, and wanted to get it right. This lead me on a quest to find good books on the subject of time and this turned out to be one of the best. It is a clearly written, well-organized, exhaustively-researched, and deeply thought-out from both the philosophical and scientific points of view. Though Dainton limits himself somewhat (with good reason) it is the most comprehensive and well-explained book of its kind I've found. He uses very little jargon and includes a glossary for those of us who haven't taken the prerequisite courses. It has wide-breath and could be used as a textbook covering the ideas of many thinkers in the field. Somehow, he even made McTaggart comprehensible. I believe one chapter reflects more of Dainton's own research and that is the one that deals with consciousness. I found it so fascinating I ordered Dainton's new book, "Stream of Consciousness."
I didn't buy this book at first because there are no editorial reviews here on Amazon (as of 2/8/08) and no search inside. As it happens though, "Time and Space," was recommended in the forward of another book I was reading, "Travels in Four Dimensions," by Robin Le Poidevin (good but not as clear and comprehensive as this one).
If you'd like to search inside this book, I found you can do it in Google Books and while you're there you can read a peer review on the back jacket.
14 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2006
Well, fairly comprehensive. There is no mention of the crucial ideas of Henri Bergson (Relativity and Simultaneity, Time and Free Will, etc.), who basically debunked relativity as a merely mathematical tool with no real physical consequences.
But other than that ommission, this is about the most thorough book on the subject of time that I've ever read (and I've read a LOT of books on the subject of time). If you're time-haunted person, then this book is a must-have.
on April 28, 2013
A very good presentation of all theories that tried to grasp the mysteries of “time”. I would not claim that it is an easy book to read and grasp all the subtle meanings of the different theories trying to define what time is, at least as far as I am concerned. It covers all notable attempts to understand time, and gives the reader a flavor of the difficulties to pinpoint “time”. My opinion is: “Unless we understand the full implications of Gravity [curvature of space] we won’t be able to solve the time riddle. And even when the riddle of time will be resolved and fully grasped, we -as humanity- will be confronted with another question: Since particles have a very long life span, amounting to 10 to the power of 40 years or more, why complex aggregations of these particles, like human beings, have to disintegrate within less than 100 years? Why life is so short? Why lifeless conglomerations have evidently much larger life spans than living beings? In conclusion, I strongly recommend the book to whoever wants to seriously deal with "TIME".