Germaine Greer is nothing if not controversial, and the Australian-born feminist regularly raises an eyebrow or eleven when it comes to her views on certain topics and issues.
But this time it seems she has really overstepped her mark, with Cardiff University students now petitioning to have her guest lecture cancelled after hearing her thoughts on the transgender community.
Germaine, who once asked Australia’s foreign minister Julie Bishop if she would #FreeTheNipple for the Bali Nine, recently claimed that transgender women do not “look like, sound like, or behave like women,” and strongly suggested that Caitlyn Jenner transitioned simply to get a piece of the Kardashian-Jenner women’s attention cake.
When asked to comment on Caitlyn’s high chances of receiving Glamour‘s Woman of the Year award, Germaine told BBC2’s Newsnight, “I think misogyny plays a really big part in all of this, that a man who goes to these lengths to become a woman will be a better woman than someone who is just born a woman.”
She continued, “It seems to me that what was going on there was that he/she wanted the limelight that the other, female, members of the family were enjoying and has conquered it, just like that.”
Germaine is scheduled to host “Women & Power: The Lessons of the 20th Century” on November 18, however, a Change.org petition was started last Friday to have the lecture cancelled.
Cardiff University student union’s women’s officer, Rachel Melhuish, started the petition which has already received over 2, 190 signatures.
“Greer has demonstrated time and time again her misogynistic views towards trans women, including continually misgendering trans women and denying the existence of transphobia altogether,” Rachel wrote.
Germaine told BBC2’s Newsnight that the petition claims are “nonsense”. She said, “Apparently people have decided that because I don’t think that post-operative transgender men are women, I’m not to be allowed to talk. I’m not saying that people should not be allowed to go through that procedure, what I’m saying is it doesn’t make them a woman.”
It is not yet confirmed whether or not the lecture will go ahead, but it sounds as if Germaine might opt out on her own accord. “I’m getting a bit old for all this. I’m 76. I don’t want to go down there and be screamed at and have things thrown at me. Bugger it. It’s not that interesting or rewarding.”