Time in the theory of relativity: on natural clocks, proper time, the clock hypothesis, and all that


When addressing the notion of proper time in the theory of relativity, it is usually taken for granted that the time read by an accelerated clock is given by the Minkowski proper time. However, there are authors like Harvey Brown that consider necessary an extra assumption to arrive at this result, the so-called clock hypothesis. In opposition to Brown, Richard T. W. Arthur takes the clock hypothesis to be already implicit in the theory. In this paper I will present a view different from these authors by recovering Einstein's notion of natural clock and showing its relevance to the debate

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