We heart diversity, culture and colour in this Colour Issue. Evolve Asia surveys three iterations of the rainbow flag, the inclusive and inspiring emblem of multiple causes and cultures.
lgbt pride flag
The well-known symbol for the LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender) movement is also known as the Freedom Flag.
The different colors symbolize diversity in the gay community, and the flag is used predominantly at gay pride events and in gay villages worldwide in various forms including banners, clothing and jewelry.
Originally created with eight colors, pink and turquoise were removed for production purposes and as of 1979, it consists of six colored stripes. It is most commonly flown with the red stripe on top, as the colors appear in a natural rainbow. Aside from the obvious symbolism of a mixed LGBT community, the colors were designed to symbolize: red (life), orange (healing), yellow (sunlight), green (nature), blue (harmony), and purple/violet (spirit). The removed colors stood for sexuality (pink) and art/magic (turquoise).
In Essen, Germany in 1922, the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) designed an international co-op symbol and a flag for the first "Co-operators' Day," which was held in July 1923. After some experiments with different designs, a famous French cooperator, Professor Charles Gide, suggested using the seven colours of the rainbow for the flag. He pointed out that the rainbow symbolized unity in diversity and the power of light, enlightenment and progress. The first co-op rainbow flag was completed in 1924 and was adopted as an official symbol of the international cooperative movement in 1925.
A seven-colour rainbow flag is a common symbol of the international cooperative movement.
Like the rainbow, this flag is a symbol of hope and peace. The seven colours from flags around the world fly in harmony. Each of the seven colours in the co-operative flag have been assigned the following meaning:
red: stands for courage;
orange: offers the vision of possibilities;
yellow: represents the challenge that GREEN has kindled;
green: indicates a challenge to co-operators to strive for growth of membership and of understanding of the aims and values of co-operation;
sky blue: suggests far horizons, the need to provide education and help less fortunate people and strive toward global unity.
dark blue: suggests pessimism: a reminder that less fortunate people have needs that may be met through the benefits of cooperation.
violet: is the colour of warmth, beauty, and friendship.
The international symbol of the peace movement is used in demonstrations against nuclear weapons and war.
The most common variety has seven colours, purple, blue, azure, green, yellow, orange and red, and is emblazoned in bold with the Italian word PACE, meaning "peace".