Germaine Greer Biography
Brought up in Melbourne, Australia, Germaine Greer became attracted to radical anarchist philosophies which sought to challenge the perceived wisdom of the day. She was particularly attracted by radical feminist politics and her book - The Female Eunuch (1970) proved a pivotal book in the 'post feminist' literature of the 1970s. The Female Eunuch explores the idea of continual female oppression arguing that society seeks to impose certain norms onto women's expected behaviour. In the book Germaine argues it is time for women to get angry again and pursue greater independence away from the social pressures that exist.
The Female Eunuch and Germaine Greer have been associated with the 'bra burning movement' because Germaine pointed out how restrictive and uncomfortable a 1960s bra could be.
"Bras are a ludicrous invention," she wrote, "but if you make bralessness a rule, you're just subjecting yourself to yet another repression."
She has courted both praise and controversy. At one time she mentioned
"The more people we annoy, the more we know we're doing it right."
On various occasions she has been fined whilst giving speeches. For example, in New Zealand she was fined for swearing though this brought out a good deal of sympathy for her.
She studied in Newnham College Cambridge and during her time at University joined the Cambridge footlights which launched her into the London arts and social scene. She has worked for the London satirical magazine Private Eye and also in recent times has appeared several times on the hit BBC news satire programme Have I got news for you.
In the 1970s, she also developed an interest in art history. researching a book The Obstacle Race, the Fortunes of Women Painters and Their Work .
Politics of Germaine Greer
Germaine Greer is not associated with any particular political party. She describes her politics as an opposition to capitalism and hierarchical structure. It is a mixture of anarchism and Marxism, though she doesn't place too much emphasis on labels and ideology.
She has frequently courted controversy in her home country of Australia. She wrote a critical piece about Steve Irwin saying that his death had shown the animal kingdom had taken its revenge. This created much controversy in Australia, though she stood by her statement.
She also once criticised Australia for being a sports-mad suburban wasteland devoid of intellectual stimulation. She was also critical of Australia's relaxed attitude to the aboriginal population. Former Australian PM John Howard was dismissive of her comments.
She was also somewhat dismissive of Madonna the pop icon criticising her as being the future of feminism. link
"Madonna was a middle-class girl pretending to be tough, a religious girl pretending to be irreligious,:"