Germaine Greer has denied saying ‘lopping off your dick doesn’t make you a woman’ — but there’s proof

Feminist author Germaine Greer has denied saying “lopping off your dick and wearing a dress doesn’t make you a f*****g woman” despite saying it to a television show.

During Genderquake: The Debate, a programme intended to discuss gender in modern society which has since been heavily criticised, Greer was challenged on comments she had made in 2015.

Debate host Cathy Newman read part of a statement Greer had made to the Victoria Derbyshire Show that was read out on the programme by the host, and asked whether Greer still held that belief.

As part of a statement to the popular BBC daytime show, Greer said: “Just because you lop off your d**k and then wear a dress doesn’t make you a f***ing woman.”

Greer, looking visibly startled by the comments as they were read by Newman, replied: “I don’t think I ever said them.”

“I don’t recall ever accusing transexual men of lopping their dicks off.

“I’m very well aware there is a very lucrative industry that is lopping their dicks off.”

(Channel 4)

After Greer stated that she had never appeared on the Victoria Derbyshire Show, Newman clarified that she had made the comments in a statement to the programme without appearing.

Newman then asked whether Greer had then moved on from that view and wouldn’t repeat the remarks, and whether Greer would acknowledge that they were transphobic.

“Well they’re pretty unpleasant, I suppose,” Greer said.

“The thing is, being without a penis doesn’t make you a woman anymore than being without a womb makes you a man.

“We’re using very crude measurements here.”

(Channel 4)

The author went on to criticise the ‘caricature of womanhood’ that women endure through shows such as Mrs Brown’s Boys, without relating it back to her original comments about transgender women.

Greer then denied that a woman had to have a womb, or that a man required a penis. However, the author then reiterated the comments she originally denied making.

She said that “[cutting off your penis] doesn’t make you a fucking woman, it makes you a man without a cock!”

Mrs Brown’s Boys (Alan Peebles)

In 2015, Victoria Derbyshire said that they had asked Greer to appear in person as part of a discussion on trans rights, but as Greer was travelling, took a statement from the 79-year-old instead.

Derbyshire said: “We did ask her to come on the programme.

“She is travelling, so she can’t. She gave us a statement and there are some expletives in this which I will leave out… she was pretty cross.”

A BBC spokesperson declined to comment regarding Greer’s words during the debate, but provided footage of the Victoria Derbyshire Show reporting the author’s original statement.

On Thursday, Victoria Derbyshire tweeted this footage, stating: “For those still talking about Channel4‘s Genderquake debate and asking whether Germaine Greer was on our programme or not – here’s the answer.”

In the statement, Greer continued by comparing transgender people to people who identify as dogs.

Related: Transgender activists and allies boycott Channel 4’s controversial gender debate

Greer said: “I’ve asked my doctor to give me long ears and liver spots and I’m going to wear a brown coat but that doesn’t turn me into a f***ing cocker spaniel.

“I do understand that some people are born intersex and they deserve support in coming to terms with their gender but it’s not the same thing.

“A man who gets his dick chopped off is actually inflicting an extraordinary act of violence on himself.”

(Channel 4)

Fellow Genderquake: The Debate panellist Munroe Bergdorf responded to Greer during the live broadcast, stating that Greer’s views were irrelevant to her existence as a trans woman.

Bergdorf said: “She doesn’t know what she thinks or what she said in the past.

“How I identify, or how any trans woman identifies, isn’t really impacted by what Germaine Greer thinks.

“It makes no difference to me what Germaine thinks about trans women.”

Greer has previously spoken out against “man’s delusion that he is female,” claiming trans women are “some kind of ghastly parody” that will never be women because they do not know what it’s like to have a “big, hairy, smelly vagina.”