From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Analytic philosophy is a generic term for a style of philosophy that came to dominate Anglo-American and Anglophone countries in the 20th century. In the United States, for example, the overwhelming majority of university philosophy departments self-identify as "analytic" departments.
Contrast with continental philosophy.
1960 and Beyond
In the early 1950s, logical positivism was critically challenged by Wittgenstein in Philosophical Investigations, Quine in Two Dogmas of Empiricism, and Sellars in Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind. Following 1960, both logical positivism and natural language philosophy fell rapidly out of fashion and Anglophone philosophy began to incorporate a wider range of interests, views, and methods but most philosophers in Britain and America still consider themselves to be "analytic philosophers." Largely, they have done so by expanding the notion of "analytic philosophy" from the specific programs that dominated Anglophone philosophy before 1960 to a much more general notion of an "analytic" style, characterized by precision and thoroughness about a narrow topic and opposed to "imprecise or cavalier discussions of broad topics." Peter Hacker contends that much contemporary philosophy that calls itself analytic does not deserve the title. Explaining the shift to what is now called analytic philosohy, he argues that philosophy’s center of gravity shifted from Britain to the US in the mid 70s, mostly for economic reasons. Under the influence of scientific and technological developments, like computers, neurophysiology, and Chomskyan linguistics, Wittgenstein’s arguments against his own earlier Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus position were disregarded in the face of a somewhat vulgarised revival of that very position.