Instants and Instantaneous Velocity

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Harrington, James
preprint description
As Frank Arntzenius has shown, instantaneous velocity continues to pose philosophical puzzles. Here I recap the flaws involved in all three standard theories of velocity-the 'at-at' theory plus the calculus, impetus or dispositional theories and `no-instants' theories. Next, I argue that, although it avoids the problems with impetus theories identified by Arntzenius, Marc Lange's dispositional theory of velocity suffers from its own variety of philosophical perplexity. I conclude by arguing for a modified `no-instants' theory, inspired by Aristotle's responses to Zeno's paradoxes, that avoids the problems for the versions considered by Arntzenius. In addition, this theory points the way to a more philosophically perspicuous account of the internal structure of time.