Dr. John Thrasher IV

Dr. John Thrasher IV

Associate Professor, Smith Institute for Political Economy and Philosophy
Schmid College of Science and Technology; Department of Philosophy
Office Location: Wilkinson Hall 210
Office Hours: By appointment
University of Colorado, Boulder, Bachelor of Arts
University of Arizona, Master of Arts
University of Arizona, Ph.D.


Assistant Professor in Philosophy. John’s research focuses on the relation of individual practical rationality to social rules as well as the way those rules are organized into systems of norms and institutions.

Professor Thrasher's Chapman Digital Commons Page.

Recent Creative, Scholarly Work and Publications

Thrasher, John. 2023. “Permission, Prohibition, and Dynamism.” In Jonathan Adler (ed.) Climate Liberalism. Palgrave MacMillan. pp. 227-249.
Thrasher, John. 2023. “Experimental Political Philosophy: A Manifesto.” In Matt Lindauer (ed.) Advances in Experimental Political Philosophy. Bloomsbury.
Nichols, Shaun and John Thrasher. 2023. "What Does Labor Mixing Get You?" In Matt Lindauer (ed.) Advances in Experimental Political Philosophy. Bloomsbury
Nichols, Shaun and John Thrasher. 2023. “Ownership and Convention.” Cognition (237)
Thrasher, John. 2022. “Contractarian Justifications.” In Ben Ferguson and Matt Zwolinski (eds.) Routledge Companion to Libertarianism. pp. 56-67.
Thrasher, John. 2022. “Game Theory.” In Chris Melenovsky (ed.) Routledge Companion to Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. pp. 67-80.
Hankins, Keith & John Thrasher. 2022. “Hume’s Politics and Four Dimensions of Realism.” The Journal of Politics 84(2): 1007-1020.
Thrasher, John and Ryan Muldoon. March 9, 2022. "Freedom is our strength. Let’s extend it by offering refuge to oppressed people." Op-Ed, Orange County Register. https://www.ocregister.com/2022/03/09/freedom-is-our-strength-lets-extend-it-by-offering-refuge-to-oppressed-people/
Gaus, Gerald & John Thrasher. 2021. Philosophy, Politics, and Economics: An Introduction. Princeton University Press.
D’Agostino, Fred, Gaus, Gerald, and John Thrasher. 2021. “Contemporary Approaches to the Social Contract.” The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/contractarianism-contemporary/
Thrasher, John. 2021. Review of “James Lindley Wilson, Democratic Equality." Review of Politics 83(4).
Handfield, Toby, John Thrasher, Andrew Corcoran, Shaun Nichols. "Asymmetry and Symmetry of Acts and Omissions in Punishment, Norms, and Judged Causality." Judgment and Decision Making. 16(4): 796-822.
Hankins, Keith & John Thrasher. 2021. “Smithian Sympathy and the Emergence of Norms.” Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. doi.org/10.1111/phpr.12833
Halliday, Daniel & John Thrasher. 2020. The Ethics of Capitalism. Oxford University Press.
Thrasher, John. 2020. “On Minimal Morality.” Analytic Philosophy. 61(1): 46-56.
Thrasher, John. 2020. “Agreeing to Disagree: Diversity, Political Contractualism, and the Open Society.” The Journal of Politics. 82(3): 1142-1155.
Freiman, Chris and John Thrasher. 2019. “The Right to Own the Means of Production.” In Jahel Queralt and Bas Van Der Vossen (eds.) Economic Liberties as Human Rights. Routledge Press.
Thrasher, John. 2019. “Constructivism, Representation, and Stability: Path-Dependence in Public Reason Theories of Justice.” Synthese 196(1): 429-450.
Handfield, Toby and John Thrasher. 2019. “Two of a Kind: Are Norms of Honor a Species of Morality?” Biology & Philosophy 34(3).
Thrasher, John. 2019. “Self-Ownership as Personal Sovereignty.” Social Philosophy & Policy. 36(2): 116-133.
Thrasher, John. 2019. “Democracy Unchained: Contractualism, Individualism, and Independence in Buchanan’s Democratic Theory.” Homo Oeconomicus. 35: 25-40.
Thrasher, John. 2018. “When Equality Matters.” In David Boonin (ed.) The Palgrave Handbook of Philosophy and Public Policy. Palgrave.
Thrasher, John. 2018. “The Price of Sociality: Review of Jonathan Birch,” The Philosophy of Social Evolution.’ Metascience.
Handfield, T., John Thrasher, and Julian Garcia. 2018. “Greenbeards and Signaling: Why Morality isn't Indispensable.” Behavioral and Brain Sciences. 41(e103).
Thrasher, John. 2018. “Evaluating Bad Norms.” Social Philosophy & Policy. 35(1): 196-216
Thrasher John, and Kevin Vallier. 2018. “Political Stability in the Open Society.” American Journal of Political Science. 62(2):398-409.
Thrasher, John and Toby Handflied. 2018. “Honor and Violence: An Account of Feuds, Duels, and Honor Killings.” Human Nature 29(4):371–389.
Thrasher, John. 2017. “Social Contractarianism” In Brennan, Jason, Bas van der Vossen, and David Schmidtz (eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Libertarianism. Routledge.
Thrasher, John and Gerald Gaus. 2017. “On The Calculus of Consent.” In Jacob Levy (ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Classics in Contemporary Political Theory. Oxford University Press.
D’Agostino, Fred, Gerald Gaus, and John Thrasher. 2017. “Contemporary Approaches to the Social Contract.” The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Abbink, Klaus, Lata Gangadharan, Toby Handfield, and John Thrasher. 2017. “Peer Punishment Promotes Enforcement of Bad Social Norms.” Nature Communications 8 (2017).
Thrasher, John. 2016. “The Ethics of Legislative Vote Trading.” Political Studies 64(3): 614-629.
Gaus, Gerald and John Thrasher. 2015. “Rational Choice and the Original Position: The (Many) Models of Rawls and Harsanyi.” In Timothy Honton (ed.) The Original Position. Cambridge University Press.
Thrasher, John and David Schmidtz. 2015. “Bankers, Vampires, and Organ Sellers: Who Can You Trust?” In Garnett, Robert, Paul Lewis, and Lenore Ealy (eds.) Commerce and Community: Ecologies of Social Cooperation. Routledge.
Thrasher, John and Kevin Vallier. 2015. “The Fragility of Consensus: Public Reason, Diversity and Stability.” The European Journal of Philosophy 23(4): 933-954.
Thrasher, John. 2015. “Adam Smith and the Social Contract.” The Adam Smith Review. 8: 195-216.
Thrasher, John and Keith Hankins. 2015. “When Justice Demands Inequality.” The Journal of Moral Philosophy. 12(2): 172-194
Schmidtz, David and John Thrasher. 2014. “The Virtues of Justice.” In Timpe, Kevin and Craig A. Boyd (eds.) Virtues and their Vices. Oxford University Press.
Thrasher, John. 2014. Review of “John Tomasi, Free Market Fairness.” Public Choice 159(1-2): 309-311.
Thrasher, John. 2014. “Ordering Anarchy.” Rationality, Markets and Morals. 5(1): 30-46.
Thrasher, John. 2014. “Uniqueness and Symmetry in Bargaining Theories of Justice.” Philosophical Studies. 167(3): 683-699.