The upside down rose is a symbol of the LGBTQ+ community. It is often worn as a necklace or pin, and occasionally people will paint it on the pavement or other surfaces.
The symbol has been used by the gay rights movement since at least 1988, when it appeared in a collection of photographs taken by photographer Tom Bianchi for his book “Identical Twins”, which documented gay men and lesbian women who were born as twins.
The rose became more broadly used after being featured in an episode of “Roseanne” in 1990, where Roseanne Conner wore one around her neck during her first same-sex kiss. A year later, when she returned to the show for another season, she wore an upside down rose again in an episode about homophobia. The show won a GLAAD Media Award in 1992 for its positive representation of gay characters and issues.
Last modified: August 17, 2022