Definitions for harijan

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Princeton's WordNet

  1. untouchable, Harijan(noun)

    belongs to lowest social and ritual class in India

Freebase

  1. Harijan

    Harijan was a term used by Mohandas Gandhi for Dalits. Gandhi said it was wrong to call people "untouchable", and called them Harijans, which means children of God. It is still in wide use especially in Gandhi's home state of Gujarat. The term can also be attributed to Dalits of Pakistan called the haris, who are a group of pucca house builders. Harijan was also a newspaper that started on 11 February, 1933, brought out by Gandhi from Yerwada Jail during the British rule in India. Although Gandhi popularized the term harijan, he was not the first person to use it. The female Bhakti writer Gangasati used the term to refer to herself during the Bhakti movement, a period in India that gave greater status and voice to women while challenging the legitimacy of caste. This period started in the 4th century BC but is a living force in India today, flourishing particularly during India's Middle Ages. Gangasati lived around the 12th-14th centuries and wrote in the Gujurati language.

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