What Are Some Common Kwanzaa Symbols?


Quick Answer

Some common Kwanzaa symbols include the kinara candle holder, a straw mat, corn, the Kwanzaa flag and the unity cup. Red, green and black are the traditional colors associated with Kwanzaa, and the candle holder holds one black, three green and three red candles.

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Full Answer

The kinara or candle holder holds seven candles for the seven days of Kwanzaa. The candle holder itself represents the roots of the African people in Africa. The candles represent the seven principles of Kwanzaa. The straw mat traditionally placed under the kinara represents tradition and history.

Corn represents the children of the family, and during Kwanzaa many families place one ear of corn near the kinara for each of their children. The Kwanzaa flag, also known as the bendera or Pan-African flag, has equal horizontal bands of black, red and green. Black represents the worldwide African population. Red represents struggle, and green represents hopes for the future. The unity cup represents togetherness and the strength found in unity. Family members share the cup to show their loyalty to one another.

Other symbols sometimes used during Kwanzaa include a display of crops or produce to represent achievements and a poster of the seven principles. Gifts are also symbolic of the love of parents towards their children.

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