What role does tradition play in theological understanding? John Henry Newman’s appraisal of tradition as a form of development continues to be highly influencial.

Dr. Thomas Pfau, Professor of English at Duke University, contrasts Newman’s contention that tradition is necessary for inquiry with two prevalinging philosophies of his day, sentamentalism and historicism in his talk entitled “Newman’s Development of Doctrine: Tradition as a Form of Discernment.” Dr. John Crosby, Professor of Philosophy and Director of the MA Philosophy Program at Franciscan University of Steubenville, offers a response, posing the question as to whether or not Dr. Pfau’s argument properly holds together Newman’s vision of revelation as including both truth and history. Dr. Pfau’s talk was sponsored by the English Dept. at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Listen to the talk: