Matthew Spencer Whitt

Matthew Spencer Whitt

Lecturing Fellow of Thompson Writing Program

External Address: 
Campus Box 90025, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708-0025


My research examines the formal and informal boundaries of democracy, especially the ways that democracies shape ideals of ‘good' citizenship by excluding, differentiating, or criminalizing ‘bad' citizens and ‘aliens’. My work contributes to debates on criminal justice reform, immigration, the philosophy of punishment, and democratic theory. 

Representative publications include:

  • "Felon Disenfranchisement and Democratic Legitimacy." Social Theory & Practice. 2017.
  • "Other People’s Problems: Student Distancing, Epistemic Responsibility, and Injustice." Studies in Philosophy & Education. 2016.
  • "Democracy’s Sovereign Enclosures: Territory and the All-Affected Principle." Constellations. 2014.
  • "Review of Joseph Carens, The Ethics of Immigration." Ethics & Global Politics. 2014.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Vanderbilt University 2010

Whitt, MS. "Sovereignty, community, and the incarceration of immigrants." Death and Other Penalties: Philosophy in a Time of Mass Incarceration. April 1, 2015. 174-192.

Whitt, MS, and Medina, J. "Epistemic Activism and the Politics of Credibility: Testimonial Injustice in a North Carolina Jail." Making the Case: Feminist and Critical Race Theorists Investigate Case Studies. Trans. H Grasswick and N McHugh. (Chapter)

Whitt, MS. "Other People’s Problems: Student Distancing, Epistemic Responsibility, and Injustice." Studies in Philosophy and Education 35.5 (September 1, 2016): 427-444. Full Text

Whitt, M. "Democracy's Sovereign Enclosures: Territory and the All-affected Principle." Constellations 21.4 (December 2014): 560-574. Full Text

Whitt, MS. "The Ethics of Immigration." Ethics & Global Politics 7.3 (January 2014): 137-141. Full Text

Whitt, MS. "Felon Disenfranchisement and Democratic Legitimacy(Published online)." Social Theory and Practice 43.2: 283-311. Full Text