Multi-Universe Theory in Science Fiction


For my ENG 499 class, this is supposed to be the second blog. However, I got a bit overeager about the other prompt, so I answered the question of possibly a gendered science fiction first.

But now, onto multi-universe (multiverse) theory!

You might be wondering; how does complex physics, string theory, and multiverse connect with literature? Science fiction, of course. Any aspect of science can tie into science fiction.

In short, a multiverse is for every action or choice that a person makes, a new universe is born. Whether someone takes the Lloyd or a scenic route to campus, whether or not one chooses to arrive to class 5 minutes early, to have a chai tea latte or hot chocolate at Starbucks…the list goes on. However, there is another theory that ties into the multiverse; even if time travel existed, and someone went back in time to try and kill their former self, they would still exist. However, their “former self” would have simply just died in another parallel universe.

With the X-Files, “Jose Chung: From Outer Space”, Chung has to deal with many alternative realities at once, and has to try and pinpoint the exact timeline of the alien abduction. However, technically all the stories are correct. There are stories within stories, the same way how two different people can point to two different themes within one novel.

With Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, Sam’s repeating of days is her being stuck in a loophole of a parallel universe after her death. Or purgatory. I’m still torn between these two theories. She has to set things right and learn from her mistakes before she can move on, and let time pass. The “wrinkle of time”, so to speak, cannot be corrected until she fixes what needs to be fixed. In Sam’s case, it all revolves around Juliet, and perhaps herself too. For some, purgatory might seem to be the answer of why Sam is repeating the same day seven times in a row.

Some physics believe that time is an illusion, or not just linear. It could spiral, such as in a black hole, or even circumference in on itself. This idea is mentioned in other novels I have read too, such as the narrator Death in The Book Thief by Markus Zusak; Death himself says that his heart beats in a circle of time, never ceasing, and asides that humans are smart enough to actually die.


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