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Ryan Gabriel WindeknechtRyan Gabriel Windeknecht

Distinguished Lecturer
Department of Philosophy
801 McClung Tower
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-0480

Phone: 865-974-3255
Curriculum Vitae

I rejoined the Department in 2012, having earned my BA in Philosophy from the University of Tennessee in 2004. Before rejoining the Department, I taught at Keele University (UK), where I also earned my PhD in Politics and International Relations in 2011.

I work in political philosophy, focusing on the problem of political obligation. It seems there are as many solutions as there are philosophers trying to solve it, but I am most interested in how such philosophers understand the moral relationship that exists between individuals and their political societies.

I have also begun work in pedagogy, focusing on gamification and experiential learning theory. Gamification is the use of game elements to facilitate teaching and learning. In my gamified courses, students create characters, as players do in role-playing games. Then they engage in activities designed using experiential learning theory: I craft experiences; they reflect, conceptualize, and experiment.

Recent, representative publications

  • "Associative Political Obligations and the Distributive Objection.” Phenomenology and Mind 9 (2015): 162-171 (with J. Horton).
  • “Is There a Distinctively Associative Account of Political Obligation?” Political Studies 63/4 (2015): 903-918 (with J. Horton).
  • "Law without Legitimacy or Justification? The Flawed Foundations of Philosophical Anarchism." Res Publica 18/2 (2012): 172-188.

Recent, representative presentations

  • “King Trumpkin Decrees a Ban on Elven Refugees! Philosophical Pedagogy, Tabletop Role-Playing Games, and the Ethics of Immigration.” 10th Annual CPAC; Atlanta, GA; 1-4 September 2017.
  • “Would the Paladin Push the Fat Man? Exploring the Value of Tabletop Role-Playing Games for the Philosophy Classroom.” 38th Annual SWPACA; Albuquerque, NM; 15-18 February 2017. UT Teaching and Learning Innovation Symposium; University of Tennessee, Knoxville; 2 November 2016. 9th Annual CPAC; Atlanta, GA; 2-5 September 2016.
  • "Reconsidering the Analogy between the Family and the State." 60th PSA Annual Conference; Edinburgh (UK); 29 March-1 April 2010. 6th Annual Workshops in Political Theory; Manchester Metropolitan University (UK); 2-4 September 2009.
  • "Associative Responsibilities, or Reconceptualizing Political Obligation." Law and Philosophy Conference; University of Stirling (UK); 11-12 December 2008.
  • "Driving Through the Desert and Other Moral Dilemmas: the Depoliticization of Political Obligation." 5th Annual Workshops in Political Theory; Manchester Metropolitan University (UK); 10-12 September 2008.
  • "Natural and Nonnatural States." 2nd ECPR Annual Graduate Conference, Universitat AutonĂ²ma de Barcelona (ES); 25-27 August 2008.
  • "Anarchism, Toothless and Otherwise." 4th Annual Workshops in Political Theory; Manchester Metropolitan University (UK); 3-5 September 2007.


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