Germaine Greer has claimed that women are fuelling the appetite for female rape and murder in the media.
Referring to a recent episode of Scandi-noir drama, The Bridge, which depicts a woman being buried up to her neck and stoned to death, the second-wave feminist suggested in a Radio Times op-ed that the portrayal of violence against females is actually driven by women, rather than objectification by men.
The 79-year-old author of The Female Eunuch, also cites figures from Notre Dame University and the University of Texas about the sexual fantasies of female undergraduates. She claimed 52% of respondents admitted to fantasies of being “forced” by men, and 32% of being raped.
Greer continued: “The display of female victimhood in entertainment media is not the result of a conspiracy between wicked men to objectify, reify and sexualise women but a straightforward capitulation to market forces.
“Female victimisation sells. What should disturb us is that it sells to women.”
She added: “Male victims of sexual abuse have no desire to be seen and women have no desire to see them. For female victims the situation is different. The women involved in #MeToo have chosen to appear in news media as victims – these days called survivors – time and time again.”
Greer’s comments have drawn mixed reaction. Behavioural psychologist Jo Hemmings tweeted: “Rubbish – it’s not to do with fantasising, it’s about confronting/ taking control of fears.”
Hollywood actress Rose McGowan, who has made sex assault accusations against producer Harvey Weinstein, called Greer out as a “fail and a fraud,” while Jennifer Hodge replied: “Germaine Greer is one feminist I can’t get behind.”
It’s not the first time Greer has attacked the #MeToo movement. Back in January, she claimed women who “spread (their) legs” for Harvey Weinstein in exchange for film roles should stop “whingeing.”
Greer, who once appeared on Celebrity Big Brother, has often stoked controversy. In 1997, she objected to a transgender woman remaining a don at a women’s only Cambridge college, and has publicly argued against trans women’s validity as women ever since.
In 2015, after being no-platformed by students at Cardiff University because of her views, she told BBC’s Newsnight: “Apparently people have decided that because I don’t think that post-operative transgender men, ie M to F transgender people, are women, I’m not to be allowed to talk.”