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She does act to change her fate. In one case, she tells Hannah that she doesn't know the word she's looking for, but then she picks the up the phrase "non-zero-sum" specifically because she remembered that future scene, and is then able to tell Hannah the phrase that Hannah was asking sbout.

I suspect that making a decision to seek out a phone that works and placing a call to a phone number you never had access to counts as a conscious effort, rather than being the behaviour of a mindless automaton.

If knowledge of the consequences of an action means taking that action is no longer the act of a conscious being, then what you are suggesting is that people who plan ahead are not conscious.




If she is willing to make a phone call to find out the word but not to put the same kind of effort into averting her daughter's death, she may be conscious, but monstrous.


In the movie, her daughter's death cannot be averted (incurable disease). In the short story it can (climbing accident), but it is implied Louise's efforts to steer her daughter away from climbing actually encourage her to take it up -- or at least, Louise wonders if it was so...


I haven't seen the movie.

Vague "efforts to steer her daughter away from climbing" are the Greek-myth workaround. Surely Louise could have told her that she knew specifically that she would die on this trip, this date...


Greek-myth is what literature is all about :) Have you seen Predestination (or rather, read the Heinlein story "All You Zombies")? Stylistically, I rather like the "unable to change fate" trope, which -- like you note -- is a classic from ancient times.

In the story, it is implied the ability to see the timeline all at once, non-sequentially, comes with the loss of free will. It's a different mindset where people think they are play-acting rather than choosing the future. Of course we find this puzzling -- after all, we think sequentially :P Louise didn't warn her daughter because it wasn't in the "script" of the future.


> Louise didn't warn her daughter because it wasn't in the "script" of the future.

Indeed.

My point is that if she made a meaningful choice to make the phone call and find out the term "non-zero-sum", as manicdee was claiming, then surely by the same token she also made a meaningful choice not to warn her daughter.




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