LEADING feminist Germaine Greer has admitted she will be accused of being a paedophile after the publication of her new book, which features more than 200 photos of naked or semi-naked boys and young men.
The book, titled The Boy, will feature a thesis on "why boys have always been the world’s pin-ups".
Greer, 64, who first shot to fame with her feminist work The Female Eunuch more than 30 years ago, was quoted as saying: "This book is going to get me into a lot of trouble. I’ll be called a paedophile after this."
The book will point out how the beauty of the young boy has been admired throughout the ages. Greer reportedly admitted: "Working on this has been the best fun in the world because it has meant me looking at pictures of ravishing boys."
Critics are already lining up to condemn the work. Miranda Devine, Australia’s best-known female columnist, said: "Once you get over the hypocrisy of the godmother of 1970s feminism salivating over boys as sex objects, you are left with the fact that Greer is using the language of peadophiles."
Concern about links between the internet and paedophilia will inevitably be at the forefront of criticism of the book.
William Feaver, the art critic and biographer of Lucian Freud, famous for his paintings of nude men and women, said: "Germaine Greer is a big name with a big mouth.
"First she was the great female liberationist. Next, with The Change, it was the menopause, then with The Whole Women it was how tough motherhood is. Now it’s her obsession with young boys."
Christopher Frayling, rector of the Royal College of Art, said: "Germaine loves to shock by writing about subjects which are often considered taboo."
Greer has not been adverse to stripping off herself, posing naked in her 20s for an erotic magazine. She has also been linked with numerous young men in her time including George Best.
She claimed the book would "reclaim for women the right to appreciate the short-lived beauty of boys. I’m talking of real boys, not simpering 30-year-olds with shaved chests".
Art commentator Joan Bakewell said: "There’s nothing wrong with admiring the young male body as long as it’s not exploitative."