Is Analytic Philosophy Neutral?

Sara Bernstein

University of Notre Dame

I suggest that analytic philosophy is a methodologically flexible endeavor. As long as analytic philosophers ask questions about the same subject matter as other sorts of philosophers, analytic philosophers can engage in fruitful dialogue with those on other sides of various methodological and topical divides. I suggest that analytic philosophers’ suspicion of Thomism takes three main forms: mistrust of its foundational tenets, of its methodology, and of some of its practitioners. I discuss ways that a particular sort of methodological flexibility can alleviate this mistrust, and ways that Thomists might also work to bridge the divide.

Sara Bernstein is R.L. Canala College Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. She publishes on the metaphysics of causation, causation in the law, the methodology of metaphysics, the metaphysics of time travel, and the metaphysics of feminist theory. Her work has been funded by the National Humanities Center and the National Endowment for the Humanities.