New York Magazine columnist Ann Friedman and Tech LadyMafia founder Aminatou Sow, the co-hosts of the “Call Your Girlfriend” podcast, encouraged stronger friendships between females to advance the feminist movement at the OWN IT Summit Saturday.
At the panel, which was moderated by history professor and author of “South Side Girls” Dr. Marcia Chatelain, Friedman and Sow both agreed their lives differ greatly from the traditional caregiver roles that their mothers held. Sow said it was important to seek out new role models and appreciate past ones.
“For me, it’s a big thing about seeking out other role models, while at the same time, the older I get, trying to really find and appreciate the things that the women in my family have embodied or exemplified,” Sow said.
Sow also encouraged students to prioritize their current relationships after they graduate.
“Make peace with the fact that your friendship will probably change, and it’s not a reflection on the kind of the person either of you are,” Sow said. “If you are both open to the fact that it is a little harder to stay in touch, I think that helps.”
Friedman said working on their podcast has changed the dynamic of her and Sow’s relationship.
“Working on the podcast has imbued it with a sense of purpose, which is not always easy, but has made our friendship more powerful in a lot of ways,” Friedman said.
Sow said she has hope for the future of feminism and foresees even more advancements and achievements.
“Things are only going to get better, because we are getting louder, we expect more, we have more power and we have more money,” Sow said.
Friedman said she is excited for the future, and expressed anticipation for an increase in politically active feminists.
“I’m really excited to see what can happen if the circle of personally-identified group of feminists expands and people who personally conceptualize themselves as feminists start to become more politically active,” Friedman said.
Both Friedman and Sow said they view female friendship as a crucial support system and a key to the advancement of the feminist cause.
According to Friedman, the best, most healthy female friendships are emancipating and provide permission.
“Permission to be myself and to be great, but also to be vulnerable,” Friedman said.