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Related to Khoisan: Khoisan language, San people


A family of languages of southern Africa, including those of the Khoikhoi and the San.

[Nama khoe(khoe-n), the Nama people; see Khoikhoi + Nama san, the San people; see San.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(ˈkɔɪsɑːn; kɔɪˈsɑːn)
(Languages) a family of languages spoken in southern Africa by the Khoikhoi and Bushmen and by two small groups in Tanzania. A characteristic phonological feature of these languages is the use of suction stops (clicks)
(Languages) denoting, relating to, or belonging to this family of languages
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈkɔɪ sɑn)

a family of languages found chiefly in S Africa and including the languages of the San and the Khoikhoi.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Khoisan - a family of languages spoken in southern Africa
natural language, tongue - a human written or spoken language used by a community; opposed to e.g. a computer language
Hottentot, Khoikhoi, Khoikhoin - any of the Khoisan languages spoken by the pastoral people of Namibia and South Africa
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
[7] The other historically defined SA population groups include white (8.0%), Indian/Asian (2.5%) and coloured or mixed-ancestry individuals (8.8%); the latter have Khoisan, white, black and Malay heritage.
He said that part of the money should also be donated to the families of two humanitarian workers abducted and subsequently murdered by Boko Haram insurgents - Hussaini Ahmed Khoisan and Hauwa Liman.
In the Khoisan language !Xun of southwestern Africa there is a morphological unit which provides a paradigm case of a multifunctional category.
The native populations of South Africa's Western Cape region, the Bushmen and the Khoisan, have been infusing rooibos leaves and stems for many centuries for the benefits of the shrub's wide-ranging healing properties.
I also happen to lead a secret life as a spy who speaks 11 languages, including the Khoisan dialect.
In Running with Horses (2009) Alan Boesak decries the cursory recognition given to the Khoisan people in South Africa.
Zimbabwe is a multilingual country which has indigenous languages such as Barwe, Chewa, Khoisan (Tshwao), TjiKalanga, Nambya, Ndebele, Shona, Sotho, Tonga, Tswana, Venda, Xitsonga (which is commonly mistakenly referred to as Xichangana/shangani), Xhosa and English.
The house, later known as the 'red house' because of its red roofing, has been transformed into a Khama III Memorial Museum that harbours the history of the Khama dynasty and Serowe village, papers of famous author Bessie Head and the first inhabitants of Southern Africa known as Khoisan or Basarwa locally.
In sections on meanings of democracy; state-making; and agency, identity and belonging, they consider such aspects as from material to cultural: historiographic approaches to the eastern Cape's agrarian past, farm worker "development" agencies: what sports has to do with it, what South Africa can learn from Zimbabwe's fast-track land reforms, Khoisan revivalism and the land question, and agency and state planning in South Africa's land-reform process.
The land issue has not only reopened apartheid wounds between left and right, white and black, but it has also, and probably most significantly, drawn in the advocacy and anger of South Africa's first people--the Khoisan. The Khoisan inhabited the land before all these groups, and the most ironic and crucial aspect of the struggle over land is the reparations due to the indigenous first people.
Some of these structures may well crop up in other Khoisan ethnographies or even worldwide (such as Cinderella-type myths), but exactly what a narrative structure may mean in a specific social context is a more focused matter.