Time's Arrow, Time's Cycle : Myth And Metaphor in the Discovery of Geological Time
This excursion into the ways we conceptualize the past explores a central dichotomy between time's arrow (an unilinear Newtonian succession of unique events) and time's cycle (the recursive patterns that re-appear in a world that remains fundamentally unchanged).
- Paperback | 240 pages
- 128 x 198 x 16mm | 225g
- 30 May 1991
- Penguin Books Ltd
- London, United Kingdom
Table of contents
The Discovery of Deep Time: Deep Time; Myths of Deep Time; On Dichotomy; Time's Arrow and Time's Cycle; Caveats. Thomas Burnet's Battleground of Time: Burnets Frontispiece; The Burnet of Textbooks; Science versus Religion?; Burnet's Methodology; The Physics of History; Time's Arrow, Time's Cynic - Conflict and Resolution; Burnet and Steno as Intellectual Partners in the Light of Time's Arrow and Time's Cycle. James Hutton's Theory of the Earth - A Machine without a History: Picturing the Abyss of Time; Hutton's World Machine and the Provision of Deep Time; The Hutton of Legend; Hutton Disproves His Legend; The Sources of Necessary Cyclicity; Hutton's Paradox - Or, Why the Discoverer of Deep Time Denied History; Borges's Dilemma and Hutton's Motto; Playfair - A Boswell with a Difference; A Word in Conclusion and Prospect. Charles Lyell, Historian of Time's Cycle: The case of Professor Ichthyosaurus; Charles Lyell, Self-Made in Cardboard; Lyell's Rhetorical Triumph - The Miscasting of catastrophism; Lyell's Defence of Time's Cycle; Lyell, Historian of Time's Cycle; The Partial Unravelling of Lyell's World View. Boundaries: Hampton's Throne and Burnet's Frontispiece; The Deeper Themes of Arrows and Cycles.