As a work that is traditionally hailed as being antithetic to male comfort, I find that Germaine Greer’s “Female Eunuch” probably says more about the negative stereotyping of women by women than it does about men. Of course, she argues (throughout her writing) that this is merely the extension of a patriarchal tyranny, that culturally we accept some pretty astonishing subtexts as normal – when they are anything but – and our ingrained themes of sexual interaction, both inter and intra-sexually are pretty weird. That is as much as I can say easily because I am not a scholar of feminism, I have not read her works exhaustively and I am a man (I guess) and I have been told (by more than one radical feminist I have known) that I lack the insight of subjectivity, so I can comment, but I cannot truly experience.
Fair enough. I have no issue, but neither am I apologising; I do the best that I can, I treat women as absolute equals (insofar as I am able with a lifetime of cultural programming in tow) and in fact I much prefer the company of women as a generalisation than I do of men. I also found that in circa 1987 when I first read large swathes of The Female Eunuch that it seemed fundamentally out of date in parts even then. The book belonged to my dear friend Vicki who is a (somewhat) radical feminist; at least she never shaves any part of her anatomy and neither does she wear a bra although I cannot attest to whether or not she has physically burned it. I also spent one summer acting as an observer for CND in the late 1980s, a job which required me to sit outside of RAF Greenham Common from 4am until midday in a car and watch for any missile transports. I eventually got to know several of the women on that camp and they of course had built a community which more or less excluded men completely. One of those women, Pippa, a slightly loony ex-midwife at least twice my age became a good friend and although I lost touch with her a few years hence. I talked to her once about psychology, which I studied at University and beyond, and she quoted Germaine Greer to me during that discussion, she said: “Freud is the father of psychoanalysis. It has no mother.”
It has since occurred to me that the same sentiments are found in the study of astrology, with Sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto all being essentially male energies; Mercury is possibly male but at best androgynous, leaving (traditionally) only Moon and Venus to speak for the feminine. How patently ridiculous that is, but also, and thankfully, it is a situation that is gradually being addressed with the inclusion of Pallas, Ceres, Vesta and Juno into the mainstream of astrological thinking. In terms of psychoanalysis I often think of Freud as Saturn, Jung as Uranus, but there are no essential feminine powers because (as Pippa told me) even psychology is fundamentally masculine. In my view, psychology falls down in all sorts of places, but astrology does not have to fall into the same trap. Traditionalists will disagree of course, but that to me is resonant of the self-same dichotomy between psychoanalysis and behaviourism in psychology; they are utterly incompatible systems that are mixed through long habit, not through best practise.
It is for this reason that I believe a whole new avenue of astrological research is opening up. It will evolve into something meaningful in step with the onward march toward acceptance of the divine feminine in human society, and even at a personal level I am doubly compressed, by my innate astrological dissociation complex, and by a society that can only accept my male sexuality as a narrow spectrum of aggression that identifies with cars, jobs, bunny girls and team sports.
Back to the (very brief) astrology of Germaine Greer then. I have not included Eris, but of course she sits at the trined midpoint of Ma/Pl. A near fanatic mischief-maker? Undoubtedly! With Scorpio Midheaven, there is a calling to deal with sexuality, and with Mars in the anaretic degree of Scorpio the impetus to tip over from sex and control to freedom and equality is self-evident. Mercury opposes Pluto, which explains her need to tell it unadorned (just like good old blood and guts Patton remember?) but here a trine to Neptune softens, refines and takes all the edges off. Moon is conjunct Uranus too: and that alone says “radical feminism” right?
So, Germaine Greer: with a grand trine to the Midheaven and peregrine Saturn in Aries in the 3rd, may you keep going it alone and telling it like it is until your last breath, because whilst you’re quite clearly a nutjob, you’re also brilliant, beautiful and absolutely, undeniably genuine.