Christopher Bartel



United States

Institutional affiliation

Appalachian State University


Associate Professor of Philosophy

Research interests relevant to game philosophy

I work primarily in analytic aesthetics. I am currently pursuing a project on the ethical criticism of violence in video games. Adopting a broadly virtue ethical account, I argue that it can be (though, not necessarily) morally wrong to enjoy violence in video games when (and only when) doing so is employed as a means to cultivate real-world immoral desires. I aim to show how this theory is best able to account for our intuitive moral responses to problematic examples of the enjoyment of video game violence and how such a theory can help us to resolve Morgan Luck’s “gamer’s dilemma”. I am also interested in the ontology of video games, the nature of “interactivity”, and feminist critiques of games and gaming culture.

In addition to my work on video games, I have also published essays on the philosophy of music and philosophy of fiction.

Publications and presentations relevant to game philosophy

“Resolving the Gamer’s Dilemma”, Ethics and Information Technology 14 (2012): 11-16. DOI: 10.1007/s10676-011-9280-8

“Free Will and Moral Responsibility in Video Games”, Ethics and Information Technology 17 (2015): 285-293. DOI: 10.1007/s10676-015-9383-8


video games, ethics, ontology, interactivity, feminism


Christopher Bartel