Scott Olson/Getty Images hide caption The Pan-African flag, (also called the Marcus Garvey, UNIA, Afro-American or Black Liberation flag,) was designed to represent people of the African Diaspora, and, as one scholar put it, to symbolize "black freedom, simple." Sheet music for "Every Race Has a Flag But the Coon," published in 1900.
"The fact that the black race did not have a flag was considered by Garvey, and he said this, it was a mark of the political impotence of the black race," Hill explains.
Every race has a flag but the coon." The creation of a flag, then, was a step for black people around the world to claim an identity in their own right.
Michael Hanchard, a professor of Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, says that flags are important because they symbolize the union of governance, people and territory.
For black people, the flag means "that they have some way of identifying themselves in the world.