London, 1958.

There are thousands of people gathered in Trafalgar Square.

These people hold placards and protests signs.

These signs are all unified by a simple symbol.

It’s a circle that has three lines within it.

A semaphore for the letters ‘N’ and ‘D’.

‘Nuclear Disarmament’.


Washington, 1963.

A great man declares that he has a dream.

And 250,000 civil rights supporters stand strong together.

The symbol is seen again.

It appears on placard after placard.

And protest sign after protest sign.

The symbol became synonymous with social change.

You could see it in Sarajevo and South Africa.

Belgrade, Berlin and beyond.


The symbol could have been, but never has been copyrighted.

It is a symbol of freedom that is free for everyone, everywhere.

This means that it could cross national and cultural boundaries.


The success of this now iconic symbol is found in its simplicity.

It is simple to identify.

It is simple to replicate.

It can convey a simple, but powerful meaning;

And is imbued with both activism and optimism.

Above all, this symbol serves a simple purpose.

And that purpose is ‘PEACE’.


Michael McCourt - Strategic Planner at mcgarrybowen.

Follow Michael on twitter @michaelmccourt