Germaine Greer has done it again. The veteran feminist has launched another verbal assault on a rival female icon, commanding Victoria Beckham to "keep quiet, have some babies and put on some weight".
Ms Greer's comments were made in an online debate on "The Secret Meaning of Posh and Becks", in which she described Mrs Beckham as "a scrawny, sabre-toothed beast" who looked like a "starving carnivore". Questioned by The Independent on Sunday, Ms Greer was unrepentant, reiterating her view that Mrs Beckham should stop making albums because they are so awful and concentrate on staying at home or else find her good-looking husband wooed by another woman.
Even by Ms Greer's high standards, the attack sounds vicious. Although there have been other victims of Ms Greer's sharp tongue, including Anne Robinson, Cherie Blair and the columnist Suzanne Moore, Mrs Beckham is probably the least well equipped to defend herself from the barbs.
Last night, Mrs Beckham's agent declined to offer a comment in response to Ms Greer's vituperation. Instead, the former Spice Girl's defence was left to battle-hardened women fed up with Ms Greer's seeming lack of sisterhood.
Erin Pizzey, the founder of the women's refuge movement and author of the book Scream Quietly or the Neighbours Will Hear, was aghast, declaring the attack "vicious and unnecessary".
"Germaine Greer has turned so many women off feminism," she said, "She is a narcissist and an exhibitionist. If we weighed up what Germaine Greer has offered the world against the Beckhams' example of a loving, warm family, then Posh and Becks win hands down. Part of the problem for Germaine Greer is she cannot have babies because nobody wants to marry her." Natasha Walter, author of The New Feminism who has crossed swords with Ms Greer in the past, is puzzled. "I don't really understand why she needs to attack women individually," said Ms Walter. "I think she thinks it's all a game. It's all fun and it's all publicity and she doesn't get why people get so upset about it.
"I don't think Victoria Beckham will be hurt by Germaine Greer. She is probably not really aware of who Germaine Greer is. She is not that up on her feminist history. Nevertheless commenting on people's appearance rather than their ideas is wrong."
Speaking from her home in Essex, Ms Greer, author of the seminal, feminist work The Female Eunuch, appeared, at first, somewhat defensive about her comments.
She explained they had been taken out of context, ascribing the views to female fans of the footballer who had little regard for his wife and were motivated by jealousy.
"I don't give a fuck what she does," said Ms Greer, before warming to the topic and calling Mrs Beckham a "velociraptor". She told The Independent on Sunday: "I just hope she doesn't waste all their money trying to make a great album because she can't. She says her career is important but I think that is nonsense. She should be around a bit more [at home] or somebody else is going to move in on the unguarded flank if she is not careful.
"What one would not like to see is the career of a peerless footballer brought low by the ambition of a less than brilliant pop star. She should have another baby in the interests of poor old Brooklyn."
Ms Greer had no regrets and showed no contrition for the salvoes launched on more high-brow rivals. "It has usually made the women I have said it about." Her most recent spat was with Anne Robinson, the host of The Weakest Link and came in response to comments in the television presenter's autobiography. Ms Greer announced she would name a chicken after Ms Robinson and enjoy it all the more when it came to wringing the bird's neck.
Annie the Chicken was still alive last night although time is running out. "I haven't got around to pulling its neck," explained Ms Greer. "But I'm getting some new chickens. So Annie is due for the pot."
She should keep quiet, have babies, and put on weight.
We were observing the peculiar behaviour of my hen, when my friend said, looking into the ginger bird's tiny, mad red-rimmed eye, 'D'you know who she reminds me of?'
She's like his concubine. She's an intelligent woman doing an important job. I don't want to see her coming around being a wife.
Hair birds-nested all over the place, fuck-me shoes and three fat inches of cleavage ... so much lipstick must rot the brain.
Labour's female MPs:
A lot came in by default. They were a backing group while he, Tony Blair, was the teen idol – it's crapulous.Reuse content