Pink is a pale red color that was first recorded in the 17th century to describe the pale red flowers of pinks, flowering plants in the genus Dianthus. This color stands for beauty, grace and goodness. Pink itself is a combination of red and white. Other tints of pink may be combinations of rose and white, magenta and white, or orange and white.
Roseus is a Latin word meaning "rosy" or "pink." Lucretius used the word to describe the dawn in his epic poem On the Nature of Things (De Rerum Natura). The word is also used in the binomial names of several species, such as the Rosy Starling (Sturnus roseus) and Catharanthus roseus.
Pink in gender
- In Western culture, the practice of assigning pink to an individual gender began in the 1920s. From then until the 1940s, pink was considered appropriate for boys because it was the more masculine and decided color while blue was considered appropriate for girls because it was the more delicate and dainty color. Since the 1940s, the societal norm apparently inverted so that pink became appropriate for girls and blue appropriate for boys, a practice that has continued into the 21st century.
- Though the color pink has sometimes been associated with gender stereotypes, some feminists have sought to reclaim it. For example, the Swedish radical feminist party Feminist Initiative uses pink as its color.
- Pink is the color of the Breast Cancer Awareness ribbon. Pink was chosen partially because it is so strongly associated with femininity.
- It has been suggested that females prefer pink because of an evolutionary preference for reddish things like ripe fruits and healthy faces. This suggestion, however, has been criticized as unsubstantiated.
Pink in sexuality
- Whereas Jewish people were forced to wear the yellow stars of David under Nazi rule, and Roma people were forced to wear a black triangle, men imprisoned on accusations of homosexuality or same-sex sexual activity were forced to wear a pink triangle. Nowadays, the pink triangle is often worn with pride.
- A Dutch newsgroup about homosexuality is called nl.roze (roze being the Dutch word for pink), while in Britain, Pink News is a leading gay newspaper and online news service. There is a magazine called Pink for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transsexual (GLBT) community which has different editions for various metropolitan areas. In France Pink TV is a LGBT cable channel.
- In business, the pink pound or pink dollar refers to the spending power of the GBLT communities. Advertising agencies sometimes call the gay market the pink economy.
- In Japan the color Cherry Blossom Pink is associated with a woman's vagina, and therefore, in Japan, softcore pornographic films are called pink movies.
- In the bandana code of the gay leather subculture, wearing a pink bandana means that one is into the fetish of playing with dildos. Wearing a dark pink bandana means that one is into tit torture.
Pink in human culture
- In 1993, artist Gioia Fonda created a conceptual piece in the form of a week long holiday called pink week. The intention of pink week is to liberate the color pink from all dogma and simply celebrate the color pink as a color.
- Bubblegum Pink is an installation by the artist duo Bigert & Bergstrom which "confronted [the viewer] with three different mental climates" involving large amounts of pink. This mirrors the use of the color in American prisons to calm aggressive prisoners. It features a pink cell and a carpet worn by repetitive pacing.
- Christo and Jeanne-Claude's Surrounded Islands wrapped wooded islands in Miami's Biscayne Bay with of bright pink fabric. Thomas von Taschitzki has said that "the monochrome pink wrappings"..."form a counterpoint to the small green wooded islands."
- Many of Franz West's aluminium sculptures were often painted a bright pink, for example Sexualitatssymbol (Symbol of Sexuality). West has said that the pink was intended as an "outcry to nature" and has alluded to phallic associations .
- In Thailand, pink is associated with Tuesday on the Thai solar calendar. Anyone may wear pink on Tuesdays, and anyone born on a Tuesday may adopt pink as their color.
- Mary Kay in 1968, Mary Kay Ash, purchased the first Pink Cadillac, which eventually became the trademark of her company.
- Since 1893 the London Financial Times newspaper has used a distinctive salmon pink color for its newsprint, mainly as a way to distinguish itself from competitors. In other countries, the salmon press identifies economic newspapers or economics sections in "white" newspapers.
- The color pink is often used to represent women (See discussion above in section on Pink in gender and sexuality.).
- In Catholicism, pink (called rose by the Catholic Church) symbolizes joy and happiness. It is used for the Third Sunday of Advent and the Fourth Sunday of Lent to mark the halfway point in these seasons of penance. However, in some Protestant denominations, the pink candle is sometimes lit on the Fourth Sunday of Advent, the Sunday of Love.
- Pink is the color most associated with Indian spirtual leader Meher Baba, who often wore pink coats to please his closest female follower, Mehera Irani, and today pink remains an important color, symbolizing love, to Baba's followers.
- The Invisible Pink Unicorn is the goddess of a parody religion, a rhetorical tool intended to satirize the contradictory properties often attributed to deities.
- Pink (especially Hot Pink) is often used to represent homosexuality (See discussion above in section on Pink in gender and sexuality.).
- Pink noise also known as 1/f noise, is a signal or process with a frequency spectrum such that the power spectral density is proportional to the reciprocal of the frequency.
- Mattel's Barbie line often displays pink prominently on packaging and other goods.