“You have to do your own growing no matter how tall your grandfather was.”

Abraham Lincoln

 

French writer - Rene Barjavel
Rene Barjavel

In Focus : The Grandfather’s Paradox

Rene’ Barjavel, a French writer of science fiction is mostly credited with thinking of the Grandfather’s Paradox. In his 1943 book, Le Voyageur Imprudent (translated as Future Times Three) he describes this very simple yet interesting paradox as such.

Suppose time travel is possible and one may travel back into the past. Now if a time traveler travels back in time and kills his grandfather before the conception of his father, how could he be alive?

The ‘grandfather paradox’ not only refer to the grandfather and impossibility of one’s own birth theory. It is generally used to define any action that makes time travel illogical and impossible. An example may be auto-infanticide where the time traveler travels back in times and kills oneself as a baby.

Perhaps the most twisted time travel paradox was imagined by Robert Heinlein in his classic short story “All You Zombies”. Do not miss our post on the same. Follow this link to the story.

 

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