The Symbolism of Hillary Clinton Wearing Purple for Her Concession Speech

The Symbolism of Hillary Clinton Wearing Purple for Her Concession Speech

The possible meanings of Hillary's latest iconic pantsuit.

The possible meanings of Hillary's latest iconic pantsuit.

Text: Jake Viswanath

Yesterday, Hillary Clinton was forced to do the disservice of making a concession speech to President-elect Donald Trump. Her speech was, as always, gracious, classy, optimistic, and immensely moving, without avoiding the pain and fear that results from the decision. It was, in a word, presidential. But what many people took notice of was her choice to wear purple.

The color purple has numerous meanings, leading many to wonder which one, specifically, Clinton was calling to mind in her sartorial choice. Here are a few speculations.

  1. The most obvious is that purple is the color that occurs when you mix red and blue, and her choice to wear it could signal a call for both political parties to unite through compromise and a mutual love for America. This may have been a nod to the battleground states, often referred to as the “purple states,” some of which she lost.
  2. Hillary also could have chosen purple to show solidarity with the LGBTQ community. The color has been adopted by the community to signal pride. Purple is also known as the color of Spirit Day, wore on this day once a year to stand against the bullying of gay youth and support the community.
  3. The choice of purple could have been a nod to Hillary’s Methodist beliefs and roots. The color represents "royalty and penitence" in the religion, accurately showing the two conflicting emotions that most supporters are experiencing right now.
  4. Purple was also the color of the women’s suffrage movement. Hillary could have worn purple to remind us of the progress that we have made in women’s rights and opportunities, and the significance that a woman got so close in becoming our president, and to encourage us to never give up the fight.
  5. Lastly, purple is the color most often used to represent royalty around the world. At V, Hillary is still our steadfast political queen, a remaining beacon of hope and encouragement for progress in the coming years, when we will need it most.

Whichever the reason, Hillary made one common theme clear: she has, and always will, stand for unity.

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