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time travel

time travel(English: time travel) Is an expression used as a material for science fiction works, movies, and other fiction works.TimeMoving to the past and future independently of the flow of.JapaneseでTime travelAlso called (Jikanryoko), depending on the mode of movement,time slip""Time warp""Time leap[Note 1]""Time tripVarious expressions are made.


The concept of time travel has various problems from a scientific standpoint.[Note 2]Has been pointed out, and it is said that it cannot be realized with the current scientific ability.

The type of time travel is based on the concept of "past-future asymmetry" and "time flow", but "time travel" is drawn in various ways depending on how these assumptions are handled. While entertaining the viewer, the author faces challenges such as building a story so that the viewer does not feel logically broken, and drawing in a dream.[Note 3].

It is a popular fantasy story (fiction), and many works dealing with time travel have been published domestically and internationally.

Positioning of time travel

Time travel is now mainlySF,FantasyIt is a concept used to set the stage in the field of.

Time Traveler is the main characterMark Twainof"Connecticut Yankee of Arthur's Court,” and Samuel Madden's “20th Century Reminiscences” that appear when angels carry books of the future, the story of time travel has been created even before the category of science fiction grew up as a clear one.

Based on such a backgroundIndustrial revolutionThe science fiction category that emerged from the subsequent development of science and technology incorporated dream science and technology and time travel as a paranormal phenomenon as a story type.

Although it is not understood whether it is a real phenomenon,Theoretical physicsIn some cases, the possibility of realization is shown (Theory of relativityTime lag, etc.). In addition, it is sometimes treated as a "fun and entertaining research subject" with a half-fantasy and thought-experimental meaning.

Types of time travel stories

There are several types of story works that use time travel as a stage setting.

A. Type by means
  1. A mechanism that realizes time travel,Time MachineBy ". "Time Machine" is from Enrique Gaspard y Limbau1887It was invented by "The Time Retrospective",1895ToHerbert George WellsAnnounced byTime MachineIt is said to have spread.
  2. A strong desire for a character, or personalSupernatural powerDerived from.
  3. SomehowCatastropheWhat is passively caused by.For this type, see "Timeslip, Or "time quake".
  4. Some kind of gate (gate) is set, both sides of the gate are open at different times, and time travel is realized by going and going there.
B. Types related to the main character's intention
  1. Intentional time travel is performed by setting the destination.
  2. Things that are uncontrollable and do not know when to travel in time.
  3. The story starts from time travel due to some unforeseen circumstances. Often the protagonists don't notice the time travel for a while.
  4. No clear time travel was shown until the end, and it became clear that time travel had occurred as a clarification.

Origin of the time travel story

Since there are a number of early works that have elements that can be considered broadly defined as time travel, there is no fully agreed definition of a work that is considered the first instance of time travel. Some myths and parables created in ancient times include stories that slip back into the future. Also, although the known works are more recent than those of the time travel to the future, the origin of the time travel to the past is not known.

Time travel to the future

HinduismThe myth ofMahabharata"[Note 4]Isen: KakudmiKing is Creator in HeavenBrahmaIt includes a story that it was tremendously long after meeting with him and returning to the ground[1].

BuddhismScripture of "Pali Buddhist scripture(Established around 29 BC), the relativity of time is preached.BuddhaWas a disciple ofOhashi leafIs skepticalen: Payasi"In the heavenly world, the flow of time is slower than in the human world, and the inhabitants there live longer than the inhabitants on earth."[2].

A Japanese old storyUrashima Taro(Urashimako)”, a story that a lot of time was flowing when coming back from Ryugu Castle. The first look at this in the literature isJapanese calligraphy』(Edited at the beginning of the 8th century) "Yukiki" is the description of the article of the July July autumn of Emperor Yuuki 22 (478). It was not published as a book, but it is described in Japan's oldest national book (national official history book).

A similar old story to ChinaLove(The oldest remaining document is said to be published in 325). It is a story that a lot of time was flowing when a lumberjack called a lumberjack met several doji children playing in the mountains and came back from the mountains.

Irish mythologyTill na nogue], the same story development can be seen. It is said that it has been 3 years since I returned to my hometown for the first time in 300 years after spending a lot of fun with the beautiful maiden of the sea and going to "The Everlasting Land.

IslamThe scripture ofQuran』The "Cave chapter",AllahTells the story of men sleeping in the cave for 309 years. this is"Seven sleeping men in EphesusIs calledRoman EmpirePeople who escaped from the persecution were trapped in a cave, but more than 200 years later, one of them was awakened to a city that awakened. It can be thought that this is because the speed of time is different between the cave where the men were sleeping and the outside world.

Other ancient GreekEpimenidesAlso has been sleeping for 59 years, during which time there is an anecdote that he did not get old.

Of a story that goes to the future by sleeping very longAmericaIn the edition,Rip Van Winkle(Published in 1820). Also,Edward Bellamy"Looking backward" (published in 1888) tells the story of a 1887 society in which a socialist utopia was realized by the hypnosis of an 2000 upper class man.

L'An 2440, rêve s'il en fut jamai, 2440 (published in 1770) is a utopian novel set in the world of 2440 AD. In a very famous work (1771 editions since its first publication in 25), he fell asleep in a dream after a fierce debate about inequality in Paris with his philosopher's friend. The adventure of an unknown person visiting Paris in the future is depicted. Robert Dernton says that the book "2440" can be read as a sincere future prediction novel, although it is said to be fantasy literature.[3]

Time travel to the past

"20th Century Reminiscences" Memoirs of the Twentieth Century (1733) is a work consisting of a series of letters addressed by British ambassadors from all over the world to Lord Treasury on the mainland of England and a few replies from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of England. It was written in 1997, and describes the situation of that era.[4].. However, in the narrative framework, these letters were written by a narrator one night in 1728.Guardian angelIt is said to be a genuine document given by. For these reasons, Paul Archon wrote in his book The Origins of the Future Novel. Origins of Futuristic Fiction , "The first time traveler in English literature is a guardian angel who brought back state documents from 1998 to 1728."[5].. However, this document did not reveal how the angels obtained these documents. In a later sentence, Alcon said, "It may be too generous to praise Madden as the first writer to draw visitors from the future," but he says, "Going back in time from the future. It deserves recognition as the first writer to come up with the clever idea of ​​time travel, in the form that sent goods are discovered in modern times."[4].

SF anthology "Beyond the boundaries" Far Boundaries (1951) in the editorAugust Durless, Written by an anonymous author in 1838 in Dublin Literacy Magazine, "The Goddess Carriage: A Timeless Man" Missing One's Coach: An Anachronism Is defined as the first time travel work.[6].. In this work, under the treeNewcastleThe narrator who was waiting for the carriage to leave the city suddenly was thrown into the world 8 years ago, and in the monastery the XNUMXth century priestBeda VenerabilisAnd gives a somewhat ironic explanation of the development of the future century. It is not revealed until the end whether these events were real events or were merely dreams. The narrator said he first found a cozy place at the base of the tree and sat down, "a suspicious reader might say that I had taken a nap," but he said. I affirm." No one in the monastery seemed to be meeting him for the first time, and Beda mumbled to talk with the narrator and thought that some other monks had done some harm to him. Suddenly, the narrator suddenly realized he was back under the tree of modern times (August 1837), and the carriage that had just waited for him passed in front of him, and stopped in Newcastle for another night. Numerous dream-like elements in the work, such as the abrupt ending of being endowed, imply another possibility to the reader.[7].

Charles DickensThe 1843 novel "Christmas carol』Is considered by some to be the first work of time travel by heroine Ebinezer Scrooge visiting Christmas past, present and future.[8].. However, Scrooge only passively observes each era and is not subject to physical influences or interference from that era.

A more definite example of time travel is the famous botanist and geologist, the famous book Pre-Human Paris published in 1861 after his death. Paris avant les hommes Found in. In this work, the protagonist was sent to prehistoric times by the magic of the "obsolete devil" (the French pun of Buatar).PlesiosaurusEncountered extinct creatures such as and the monkeys of Buatar's ancestors of human imagination, and was able to actively interfere with some of them[9].

SF-likeGadgetWas first used in the New York newspaper in 1881.Sun paperThe short story "Reverse Clock" published in The Clock That Went Backward There is. It is a setting that you can go to the past by winding a clock in the opposite direction, but there is no scientific explanation for the mechanism to go to the past and it is fantasy.

At the end of the quarrel, the hero who was hit by a big hammerKing ArthurSkipped in the age ofMark Twainof"Connecticut Yankee of Arthur's Court(1889) is an example of one of the earliest time travel articles that helped spread the subject of time travel to a large number of readers, and it is also the first of a series of works dealing with the alteration of history by the actions of time travelers. ..

Early time machine

The first work to depict time travel using the time machine is the 1887 work "The Time Retrogressor". El Anacronópete Is[10].. In this work,cast ironThe electric propulsion machine made possible for people to go backwards in time and travel in time.

The idea of ​​a machine for moving time was published in 1895H.G. WellsThe novel "Time MachineIt was spread by. This is a time travel to the future. Prior to this, Wells in 1888, "Explorers of Time" en: The Chronic Argonauts I was working on a slightly lesser-known work entitled, which was a time travel to the past. This book, which triggered the concept of the time machine to be accepted by the public, is often regarded as a work that influenced all science fiction novels dealing with later time travel.

Since then, the concept of time travel has become widely known in both science and fiction, but the question of whether time travel is actually possible remains unsolved. Even in modern physics, it is considered that time travel to the past is more difficult than time travel to the future (since time originally flows into the future, it is more unnatural to go backwards). Flow).

History and some structures of time travel stories

Wells' Time Machine was based on time travel to the future, but subsequent science fiction works have produced many works that deal not only with the future but also with the past. In these works, the appearance of a time machine is not always necessary, and includes time travel by supernatural powers and time travel by paranormal phenomena.

As a tendency of works, time travel to the future is often based on a pessimistic future society represented by "Time Machine". This is because the artist's intention is to raise problems in the present age by projecting and drawing the problems of the modern society into the future, as well as Wells' work compared the British class problem and labor problem at the time to the future society. Is.

On the other hand, in the time travel to the past, the problems and crises that exist in the present and the past are frequently the subject matter, and the contemporary phenomenon is also affected by the modification of the past.Time paradoxHas drawn many dramas that break through the crisis and modern pessimistic situations that come when history is rewritten. Also, because of the characteristics of phenomena that go back irreversibly, there are many works with nostalgic content that reflect the desire of the reader to experience the era that he had experienced once again, to get a glimpse of his epoch before his life, and to revive his life. They areHistorical novelThere are also works that have an emotional side. Time travel to the past can be depicted in a more realistic way by taking into account historical evidence and historical facts than works that deal with a futuristic society that tends to be ridiculous. Perhaps because of this, there is a reputation that it is easy for the reader to imagine the impact on the present age and to empathize with the reader.

Time paradox

timeparadox(Time ParadoxParadox) Is associated with time travelcontradictionOr change, often treated as the theme of a story. Specifically, if we modify the phenomenon that exists in the present age (relative future) in the past that has traveled in time, we focus on the paradox that there is a discrepancy between the past and present existence or situation and the causal relationship in that phenomenon. is there.

SFThe time paradox is often referred to as an important event, crisis, or thought experiment related to history in the work. Crisis due to the time paradox, suspense of avoiding it, and the interestingness due to the unexpectedness of development are often used in science fiction, where time is the theme, which is also the real pleasure of the work.

In the most famous example of the time paradox,Parenthood ParadoxThere is something called. The problem is what happens when a time traveller who goes back to the past kills his or her unborn parents. It can be divided into the following three cases.

  1. No matter how you plan it, you cannot kill it (no contradiction will occur).[Note 5][Note 6]
  2. My parents die before I give birth, so I also disappear. Then you will never go back and your parents will not die. It is a contradiction.[Note 7]
  3. A world where parents are dead and I am not born branches from the future world where I was born (Parallel world). This is not a contradiction, as it has no effect on the past when the parents were safe (a world where they didn't even move in the first place).

Even if there is no contradiction, there are many works dealing with the effects of past changes on the future. This is a trivial modification of the pastButterfly effectAs shown in the figure, it spreads in a chained manner and changes the direction of the future greatly, and minor changes are only temporary fluctuations, after which they converge and have a great impact on the future direction. There is a position that does not. Science fiction writerPaul AndersonIs a person who is heavily involved in historyassassinationThe idea of ​​the organization to prevent the alteration of history that has a serious impact on future society, such as obstruction of historical facts, etc.Time patrol(Gurdians of Time, 1960). The novel also raises the question, "If history is modifiable, what is correct history?" This question arises only in fiction works, and cannot exist in the actual history of time travel to the past.

Contradiction with time paradox

In order to explain the contradiction of the time paradox, it is assumed that the time axis is diverged and a different world parallel to the original world is born due to the history change by the time traveller.Parallel worldThere is a concept of. There is also a position that develops this concept and interprets that the world is branched at an important point in history without the intervention of time travellers. In the earliest novel that drastically incorporated this concept into his work, the conflict between two possible histories "John Barr" and "Guilonchi" was depicted.Jack williamsonof"Aviation corps(The Legion of Time, 1938).

Similar to the idea of ​​this parallel world,Quantum mechanics OfMulti-world interpretationThere is. this isPhysical interaction extends over time[Source required]However, based on this theory, even if past modifications are made, the world is reconstructed at the elementary particle level, and as a result, the time paradox does not occur. But before and after the moment of time travel in two separate worldsAmount of informationIs generated and disappears,Energy conservation law-Law of increasing entropy-Theory of relativityEtc., the law of classical mechanics fails. Also,Multi-world interpretationIs uncorrelated before and after the moment of time travelAmount of informationIt does not solve the problem of bankruptcy due to the interruption of.

On the other hand, some fiction writers are in a position to completely deny such a time paradox. For example, "if there is a time machine that can go backwards in time, there should be a conflict that shouldn't exist. Therefore, there is no time machine."Absurd lawBased on the above, there is an idea that time cannot flow backward in one way. There is also the idea that modern history includes the act of time travellers attempting to modify history. There are also works that intentionally try to make the time paradox, but that action is obstructed and the formation of the time paradox is prevented. This theory will include not only changes from the present to the past, but also changes from the present to the future.

Taking the paradox of parental killing as an example, he tries to go back and try to kill his parent, but he says that absolutely no success is built into history, or that he cannot move to the past in the first place.Robert A. HeinleinAmong a group of works that pursued the logicality of the time paradox, such as "The Gate of Time" (By His Bootstraps, 1941), "The history itself includes the alteration of history by time travellers, The time paradox cannot occur" (however, this conclusion is theoretically because "the hero has no room for activity, no effort is rewarded, and catharsis and entertainment are lacking") May be true, but literary is not generally accepted).

Also SF writerLarry NivenIn the essay entitled "The Theory and Practice of Time Travel" (1971), if the flow of history is a straight road, history can be modified by time travel. Then, after undergoing many times of history modification by time travellers, the history of humankind may eventually stabilize as "a history where time machines do not exist and time travellers never appear." It has said.

Apart from those focusing on the contradiction of the causal relationship with the past and the future based on such fictional theory and hypothesis,Logical puzzle-like time paradoxHave also been devised. Although these are logically inconsistent, they are the subject of events that are unlikely to occur, and most of them include elements that require consideration of actual physics and quantum mechanics.

[Example] "Minus zero』(Tadashi Hirose)Than

A man with a new writer bought in the present age travels in time and forgets the writer in the past. Actually, the writer has been replaced by a forgotten writer that exists in the present age over time by a third party, and a writer bought as a new one exists in the present age without time travel. A writer who travels in time travels between the present and the past as an endless loop, but as long as there is a new article in the present, that writer is not bought anywhere.

In this paradox, why there is such a lighter, and when the existence of such a lighter, the mass of the universe has increased by the amount of the lighter, and even with the passage of time it will not permanently age and even be damaged. The issue has been raised that it may not be possible. The paradox of this novel, written in the 1960s, is a type of that presented in the novel The Ring of Presence (P. Skyler Miller, 1944).Stephen HawkingHe presents a hypothesis of closed-time curves and quantum effects that have a similar concept to this, and denies time travel to the past. Although not mentioned in the novel, this time paradox says that the replaced human will created the existence and state of a unique substance.Observation problemIt also includes a physical aspect.

Time travel action

Some of the works that deal with time travel are not very particular about the logic and reasoning of the time paradox, but there are also works with dramatic contents that describe time travel and the worldview that accompanies it freely.

simulationA science fiction that emphasizes the element of interest and depicts the world that may exist if history changesIf the worldAs the work that constructed (Assumption World), "Afterglow of Mongolia" (Toyota Tsuyoshi) And “Super Taihei” (Osamu Tezuka)and so on.

In addition, there is a type that modern people who have been skipped in the past and future people who have been skipped from the present to the present aim to rescue people and social change by utilizing their advanced knowledge, but even in such types, time paradox is not so important. Not done. Novel "Darkness Do Not Fall" (L. Sprague di Camp), the hero plays an active part in the past by using modern scientific knowledge and technology.Adventure playThe one that emphasizes entertainment as a mangaJIN』(Murakami Motoka), there are many examples, such as a human drama tailored to save people in the Edo period with modern medical technology.

In addition, there are also works with the idea of ​​clarifying the mysteries of history by time travel. As an example of these works, "Goodbye Dynosaurus" (the cause of extinction of dinosaurs can be elucidated by time travel) (Robert J. SouyerThere is). However, since it is not possible to return to the past, the events depicted in the work are merely hypotheses.

novel"Sengoku Self-Defense Force], the historical facts are reproduced by time-slip of the protagonists (the history was different from the original when the protagonist flew in the past) was used.

The concept of time travel is short story "Battle with time" (Allejo Carpentier) And other literary works other than science fiction, are also used as one of the subject matter and expression techniques.

Information time travel

One of the desires that humans have for time travel isI want to go to the past while keeping the present knowledge and modify the past so that it will be a favorable result for the present.'There is something like that. Taking this in reverse,Determine current behavior based on information about the futureCan be said to be a type of time travel. Of course, if the present is modified based on future information, a time paradox will occur in which the “original future” will disappear. this"Cheat Master's Time Paradox".

Super light speed communicationSimilarly, there is an idea that if only information, not substances, can be delivered to the past without being bound by physical constraints. In many SF works, human beings (human beings) who have been hit by some disaster send warnings in the past. If the information goes back to the past, the information of "original time" disappears. this isInformation paradoxCalled.

Something unusualZukoke threesomeSeries "Amazing Zukoke Great Earthquake" (Masamitsu NasuThere is also a thing that, as a result of going to the past with "wrong knowledge of the present age", the "wrong knowledge" is embodied as "historical fact" in the time travel due to the time quake in ().Battle of SekigaharaIs a win or loss or a fictional characterKurama TenguIs expressed in the form that it actually exists). This is in progressIdea materialization phenomenonWas named.

Possibility and impossibility of time travel

Feynman's thoughts

Richard P. FeynmanIs "AntiparticleIs a positive elementary particle running backwards in time." This idea is "Dirac SeaWas solved by the physicists (in a different way).

Hawking's theory of time order protection

Stephen Hawking"Time machines are not possible." He says, "allow me to go in the pastTemporal closed curveIn order for there to beEnergy InfinityMust be[Source required]".

Time travel to the future

If it is called "time travel" that the surroundings change while not being aware of the change due to slow change or deterioration of consciousness,Urashima effect,Cold sleep(Frozen sleep) andGravity potential differenceIs theoretically possible by using. However, it is not possible to go back in time with these methods.

Time Machine Development

For the stories of people who tried to develop a time machine and their views on the difficulties, possibilities and impossibility,Time Machine ResearchSee.

Works in which time travel appears


[How to use footnotes]

注 釈

  1. ^ "Time leap" is generally used to mean that "only one's consciousness moves through space-time, and that consciousness transfers to one's body in the past and future". It is often used properly as "time travel" which means to move. In "time leap" in this sense, the time from birth to death is the limit of the range of movement to the past and future. In addition, there is no contradiction that two or more people are the same in the same space-time. However, in some works, it is also called "time leap" in the same meaning as "time travel."
  2. ^ There is a significant time contradiction (history cannot be redone),UnlimitedI have to propose that
  3. ^ In addition, in the fiction category,Special relativityAccording to them, time travel will be realized consistently."ア イ ン シ ュ タ イ ンHas proved that time travel can be done with the special theory of relativity." Although the author himself says so (sometimes it is written in the so-called "text of the earth"), Einstein actually says At best, he said, "In the eyes of an observer near the speed of light, the surrounding beings will appear to be moving faster than themselves." I didn't say "travel". The fiction authors describe the content of the theory as (mid-forcibly) "toward the future" or "time travel." Nor does the theory say that "you can travel from the present to the past." If you think of it as time travel (whether you call it forcefully or not), there is no contradiction that tends to occur in fiction, but it seems that "the one-way thing toward the future" "the surroundings are moving faster than oneself" It is often pointed out that it may be called "time travel" because it is just a "feeling like". Also, "to see people around you move faster than you" means "to feel like you've become a Noroma", and it's not in a state that will inspire people's dreams. If you say it in the work, it will be just uncomfortable, it will be uninteresting, the evaluation will be lowered, and the work will not be purchased, so the author is trying to give the reader a dream so that it does not happen. Of.
  4. ^ It is said to have been compiled from the 4th century BC to the 4th century BC.
  5. ^ "タ ー ミ ネ ー タ ー』\In the military computerSky netIs the General Commander of the Human ArmyJohn ConnorBefore the birth ofSarah ConnorTo assassinate and assassinate androidT-800I slipped in time but was blocked. After that, to kill John in the past,T-1000,TXHas been transferred from the future, but it is in a form that cannot be killed no matter what the plan.
  6. ^ "Lupin III』(Original) episode 83 and its animation "Lupine the 1rd (TV Series XNUMX)』In episode 13,KousukeBut killed Lupine's ancestors,Lupin IIIHowever, as a result of Lupine's trap, a mistake in manipulating the time machine, and so on, there is a case in which the devils failed to eliminate Lupine because of the return of the Lupines.
  7. ^ "Back to the futureIn a similar situation, "I was supposed to be born because my mother, who was supposed to be connected to my father, fell in love with me from the future, so I was born.


  1. ^ Dowson, John (1879), A classical dictionary of Hindu mythology and religion, geography, history, and literature, Routledge 
  2. ^ (1964) Indian Philosophy (7 ed.), People's Publishing House, New Delhi 
  3. ^ Robert Darnton, The Forbidden Best-Sellers of Pre-Revolutionary France (New York: WW Norton, 1996), 120.
  4. ^ a b Alkon, Paul K. (1987). Origins of Futuristic Fiction. The University of Georgia Press, 95-96. ISBN-0 8203 0932-X-.
  5. ^ Alkon, Paul K. (1987). Origins of Futuristic Fiction. The University of Georgia Press, 85. ISBN-0 8203 0932-X-.
  6. ^ Derleth, August (1951). Far Boundaries. Pellegrini & Cudahy, 3.
  7. ^ Derleth, August (1951). Far Boundaries. Pellegrini & Cudahy, 11-38.
  8. ^ Flynn, John L .. Time Travel Literature.Retrieved on 2006-10-28.
  9. ^ Rudwick, Martin JS (1992). Scenes From Deep Time. The University of Chicago Press, 166-169. ISBN-0 226-73105-7.
  10. ^ Uribe, Augusto (June 1999). "The First Time Machine: Enrique Gaspar's Anacronópete". The New York Review of Science Fiction Vol. 11, No. 10 (130): 12.


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