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News > Alumnae > Emma Freud - In Conversation for International Women's Day

Emma Freud - In Conversation for International Women's Day

4 Apr 2024
Written by Xifei Zhang

On Thursday 7th of March, Queen’s pupils, parents, staff and alumnae had the opportunity to hear from Emma Freud OBE. She was delighted to see many of her classmates in the audience, and many people she didn't know. ‘Who are you?’ she hits back with added humour. 

Emma was glad to be back in school, taking a new position of power by being able to shout, ‘You’re late!’ to late attendees mid sentence. In conversation with Eva (IS), who did a brilliant job in Emma’s usual position as interviewer, the two highlighted differences between Queen’s in her time and now. We heard about Emma’s media career spanning 40 years and continuing, but the focus was on gossip for that evening. It was classic Queen’s behaviour, Emma calling the attitude itself ‘idiosyncratic and energetic’ during her years. There was mention of the ‘Queen’s College effect’; how being back in the Hall encouraged some alumnae in attendance to chose to sit at the back and giggle with friends throughout the conversation.  

More seriously, in relation to International Women’s Day, Eva asked who her feminist role model is. It is her daughter, Scarlett. It was only after consulting with 8 surgeons that Scarlett found out her inability to walk was because there was a piece of metal touching her spinal column from a previous treatment. Doctors told Scarlett and Emma it was just in her head. Emma recalls the moment her daughter became a feminist a few years later after a huge realisation she would have been treated differently if she was a boy. Scarlett is now a prominent feminist writer and activist. Emma’s advice for the next generation of women leaders? ‘Be more Scarlett’ and be more kind. 

We were all delighted to hear Emma’s remarks on International Women’s Day. And for Emma? She was excited to take a hymn book back home with her! 

The video of the conversation with Emma can be watched here.

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