Dr. Alex Thinius

Dr. Alex Thinius

Preferably “they”, “Alex”, “Mx“.

Please get in touch with me if you are curious about my work or interested in collaborating.

My OrcID: orcid.org/0000-0002-7296-4891

You’ll find me and my work on academia.edu, research gate, linked in, and the University of Amsterdam.

Research Horizons

The Reconceptualization of Sexual Difference

This project researches recent dynamic and pluralist reconceptualizations of sexual difference in the life-sciences. It integrates perspectives in science studies, enactivism, and complex systems approaches. It is a first building block in a long term project on existentialism and complex systems science.

How is Ameliorative Change Possible?

This project looks at what emancipatory change in (gender) norms can learn from ameliorative changes in ordinary (aesthetic) practices.

Who am I, what am I doing, and where am I?

I am a philosopher and socio-cultural researcher with a core specialization in conceptualizing what sex-gender is and in what way it is part of our existence.

I am also a trained socio-cultural anthropologist and musician. I live with my partner in North Holland, where we share a home with two cats.

What I Do



4E Cognition



Postcolonial & Critical Theory

Socio-Cultural Anthropology

Interdisciplinary Gender Studies

Masculinity-Critical Research

Social Reproduction Theory

Transgender Studies

Genre Theory



Current Job

Lecturer, Literary & Cultural Analysis and Philosophy, Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Past Experiences

PhD Researcher at Universiteit van Amsterdam
(2016 – 2021)
I completed my PhD research project “What does it mean to be of a particular gender?”, funded by a research grant from the Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research. I wanted to know in what way ‘genders as groups’ exist, given individual uniqueness, ambivalence, context-dependence, perspective-dependence, and changeability qua gender, as well as historical change of what gender is about. This is important, existentially speaking, and also for emancipatory social change. And, thus taken seriously, it is also an oddball for many current approaches in metaphysics. From the point of view of Critical Theory and Metaphysics, the project looked at anti-/essentialisms in philosophy of gender. My core research results are published in my dissertation, in which I show that genders are similar to (aesthetic) genres in important ways: both are (what I call) Dynamic Categories, i.e., they are categories that transform in virtue of being realized differently and responsively by us embodied people. A further book is in progress with De Gruyter, making the results more widely accessible. I say more about the details and potentials of realizing the similarities between genders and genres: e.g., for theorizing gender as analytically distinguishable yet enmeshed with other dynamic categories (such as race), for describing and explaining concrete gendered and non-gendered phenomena and contexts, or for approaching emancipatory change of gendering norms.

Visiting PhD Student at MIT and Sheffield University
(2018 – 2018 and 2019 – 2019)
I spent four months studying in Sheffield/UK and another four months studying at MIT/US.

Lecturer at Bochum University
(2018 – 2018)
Together with Laura Martena, I designed and taught an introductory course in epistemology, argumentation theory, and critical theory around the theme “Conspiracy Theories”, addressing BA philosophy students.

Lecturer at Münster University
(2016 – 2016)
I designed and taught two elective courses open for students from all Bachelor programs. One in Philosophy of Science on scientific realism, the other one at the Department of Political Science on “interpretations of sex”.

Guitar Teacher at Music School Max-Reger in Hagen
(2015 – 2016)
I taught guitar to beginners.

Student Assistant at Center for Philosophy of Science, Münster University
(2011 – 2012)
I worked as Student Assistant at the Center for Philosophy of Science in Münster.