Author Tim Marshall on his book A Flag Worth Dying For.

Where Did That Flag Come From?

Where Did That Flag Come From?

A daily news and culture podcast with Mike Pesca.
Oct. 19 2017 6:49 PM

Flags Tell Fibs

Why flags make good symbols but bad historical records.


Martin Berenetti/AFP/Getty Images

Listen to Episode 852 of Slate’s The Gist:


Some national flags are created to unify nations, but others are simply based on myths. The Danes believe God threw theirs from heaven, and the Catalonians tell the story of a severed arm dragged across a shield. Vexilloligist and author Tim Marshall joins us to explain these myths and the complex politics of national flags. Marshall’s new book is A Flag Worth Dying For.

In the Spiel, a right-wing provocateur provokes often, but not well.

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Mike Pesca is the host of the Slate daily podcast The Gist. He also contributes reports and commentary to NPR.