LIVE STREAMING
Call Your Sister  fue creada en agosto de 2020 por Alex Hodge y Astrid Ferguson con la necesidad de conseguir que se cuenten más voces e historias latinas.  Harrison Brink
Call Your Sister was started in August 2020 by Alex Hodge and Astrid Ferguson with a need to get more Latina voices and stories told.  Harrison Brink

Meet Call Your Sister

Call Your Sister is a podcast from Astrid Ferguson and Alex Hodgethat explores and celebrates the differences among Latinas.

MORE IN THIS SECTION

Exhibition of black film

August 18th, 2022

Changes at Bushy Run

August 15th, 2022

Russell's league wide honor

August 15th, 2022

Lucho's to lose?

August 13th, 2022

Serena Williams to retire

August 9th, 2022

Jaime and Vin

August 5th, 2022

Feeling at home

August 4th, 2022

SHARE THIS CONTENT:

As the need for more Latinx representation in the media becomes more apparent, Call Your Sister, a Philly-based podcast aims to make the experiences of two Afro-Latina sisters and stories of other Latinas heard.

In August 2020, Dominican half sisters Astrid Ferguson and Alex Hodge created Call Your Sister, a podcast aimed at sharing their experiences with motherhood, sisterhood, identity struggles and lived experiences as BIPOC and Latinx women. 

“We thought this podcast would be a way to cultivate better conversations to empower women and have conversations about real things,” Ferguson told AL DÍA. “We wanted to highlight stories that talk through these different viewpoints and just give people the space to share their actual stories because I think that there really isn’t just one face to immigration or to Latinx.”

All episodes of Call Your Sister have been conducted virtually.    Courtesy of Alex Hodge and Astrid Ferguson
Community Building

As sisters who moved around a lot growing up, Ferguson and Hodge attribute the start of their podcast to not always having a stable community to share their experiences with. 

The podcast became that avenue, and created a way to connect to other Latinas and have a community for those who feel without one.  

“We moved around a lot so we didn’t really have a lot of friends that we kept up with,” Ferguson said. “Our hope is to take this podcast to build a community for women to come together and build those connections and grow together.” 

Those connections are built through both shared and different experiences.

The Call Your Sister co-founders are both Latinx, but have different lived experiences. 

“It was interesting because even though Alex and I grew up in the same household we had similar issues but for different reasons,” Ferguson said. 

Call Your Sister not only tackles Latinx representation in the mainstream, but representation within the Latinx community itself.   Courtesy of Alex Hodge and Astrid Ferguson
Aren’t I Latina? 

Ferguson and Hodge, who are five years apart, said they noticed growing up how different each of their experiences were as colorism began to make an impact on them.

“It was a lot of that bias of what we put into that ‘Afro-Latina’ look,” said Ferguson.

“It was a lot of that bias of what we put into that ‘Afro-Latina’ look,” said Ferguson.

She is Dominican and Haitian, while Hodge is full Dominican. Ferguson can remember the questions her sister faced on a regular basis about her identity. Are you really Dominican? Are you really Hispanic? Are you Black?

“It almost became a monkey in a circus type of thing, like to prove that you’re Spanish they would ask for me to say something in Spanish,” Hodge said.

She also added that although both her and her sister are Dominican, she looks more Afro-Latina. The dynamic became an important topic for them to discuss on their podcast along with the overarching theme that not every Latina looks the same or has the same background. 

“People wanted to cluster us in one big bubble, so having the conversation, bringing light to that and going into it with an open mind is what we want to share with our listeners,” said Hodge.

As the older sister, Ferguson also experienced her own struggles with colorism growing up.  

“I didn’t look like the typical Latina, but I also didn’t look like a typical Haitian so I was stuck in this middle ground of what are you, what do we categorize you as?” Ferguson said.

She went on to explain her own identity crisis growing up because she was never really taught integral parts of her Haitian heritage, like the Creole language.

As a result, Ferguson grew up identifying more with her Dominican side, but also made the effort to learn about colorism and the cross-culturalism of people in today’s society. 

One spawn of that effort is Call Your Sister alongside her half-sister.

“[To] really understand about Latindad and why Afro-Latinx was created separate from Hispanic,” Ferguson said of one line of thought. “I think there’s too much of that conversation of trying to put people into a certain category, people don’t fit into just one category anymore.”

For both, the necessity of breaking out of categories is so people are able to choose how they want to identify themselves. 

“What I am willing to categorize myself as, that’s my decision and I think that’s what everyone needs to understand regardless of where they come from,” said Ferguson. 

Call Your Sister episodes are often deep dives on both sisters’ experiences in life and growing up.   Courtesy of Alex Hodge and Astrid Ferguson
Creating a Brave Space

Along with those identity issues came the added dilemma of being unable to identify with anyone in popular media, especially for two Latinas.

“Am I weird? Am I an alien?” Hodge remembers asking herself. “I went through those phases and a lot of self esteem issues, where you see these beautiful women on TV, but they look nothing like me.”

The issue of representation also became an important one to discuss in different podcast episodes of Call Your Sister, and something implemented as a goal to make sure their podcast was a space where others could share their experiences. 

The hope is that others can find a little bit of themselves as more Latinas share their stories.

“The more we can get people to open up and share is the only way we are going to get other people to listen,” Hodge said. 

However, the need for Latina representation is still a major issue, and Ferguson and Hodge are on the frontlines when it comes to the podcasting sphere.

A Seat at the Table

The podcast medium has allowed listeners to hear a variety of different topics and issues as the format reaches and caters to people across the country. However, it wasn’t until recent years that podcast platforms saw an increase of Latina-based podcasts. 

With a list of over 40 Latina podcasts streaming on platforms, Ferguson and Hodge said they saw an increase in Latina-hosted and created podcasts in the early stages of Call Your Sister.

That being said, they also noticed a lack of real everyday stories from Latinas that tackled their differences and similarities, especially through an Afro-Latina lens.

“We have varying storylines and that is what we want to highlight, that just because it’s different, it doesn’t mean it should be removed from the conversation,” Ferguson said. “Many of us struggle with understanding what our identity is, especially when we come here to the United States, especially when we look different.” 

More representation is needed to take the next step, which involves not just recognizing the similarities and differences, but using them to overcome some of the barriers faced by Latinas in society.

“The conversation becomes how do we move forward, embracing the small steps. We know as a community it takes each and every one of us for us to move these barriers forward because we are not just dealing with image, but language and culture difference barriers,” said Ferguson.

Growing up, Hodge and Ferguson said they never felt represented by anyone they saw in popular media.   Courtesy of Alex Hodge and Astrid Ferguson
A Changing Landscape 

The Call Your Sister podcast hopes to inspire other Latinas to share their experiences and diversify the media space with varying stories of other Latinas across the country. 

“There’s a lot of things that we have to overcome to be confident in the media, to be confident in telling our stories, but it all starts somewhere,” Ferguson said.  

As the Call Your Sister podcast continues to release new episodes and share a variety of experiences, both Ferguson and Hodge said they hope to continue to create a community where all Latinas can learn from each other. 

“We’re all Latinos and we have to figure out how we can come together and support each other and not just say this is what makes you different from me,” Ferguson said. “It should be because you are different, we should have more of these conversations so we can learn from each other and I think the only way we can flatten the divide is if we have more of these conversations and highlight their stories.” 

  • LEAVE A COMMENT:

  • Join the discussion! Leave a comment.

  • or
  • REGISTER
  • to comment.
  • LEAVE A COMMENT:

  • Join the discussion! Leave a comment.

  • or
  • REGISTER
  • to comment.
00:00 / 00:00
Ads destiny link