Tswana


Tswana
/tswah"neuh, swah"-/, n., pl. Tswanas, (esp. collectively) Tswana.
1. a member of a numerous people of Botswana and neighboring parts of South Africa.
2. the language of the Tswana, a Bantu language.

* * *

Westerly division of the Sotho peoples of South Africa and Botswana.

The Tswana, numbering 4.1 million, live in a grassland environment in which they raise livestock and grow corn and sorghum. There is a seasonal migration of Tswana men, many of whom work in the mining and industrial centres of South Africa.

* * *

people
also called  Batswana  or  Botswana , formerly spelled  Bechuana 

      westerly division of the Sotho, a Bantu-speaking people of South Africa and Botswana. The Tswana comprise several groupings, the most important of which, numerically speaking, are the Hurutshe, Kgatla, Kwena, Rolong, Tlhaping, and Tlokwa. They numbered about four million at the turn of the 21st century.

      The Tswana live in a grassland environment where they practice animal husbandry and subsistence agriculture based on corn (maize) and sorghum. There is a seasonal and periodic migration of large numbers of men who work in the mining and industrial centres of South Africa.

      Tswana material culture reflects the widespread intrusion of European goods and standards. Housing forms range from the traditional circular single-roomed dwelling with conical thatched roof to multiroomed rectangular houses with roofs of corrugated iron. Transport varies from ox-drawn sledges to motor vehicles. European dress prevails.

      Every Tswana is affiliated to a patrilineal descent group, each group associated with a distinctive symbol that serves as a polite mode of address and sometimes as a surname. In self-administering political units, especially those in Botswana, the basic social unit is the ward, a readily identifiable, self-contained social and administrative entity comprising a number of lineally related families together with their dependents and servants. Its leader is usually the head of the senior family.

      Although identification with a particular ward is strong, there also are age groups (age sets, or regiments) that cut across ward loyalties. New regiments are formed periodically on a tribal basis and are important as organized labour units for public works.

      Ethnic group membership includes alien elements, and Tswana members are often in a minority, so that a Tswana group accordingly lacks cultural and even linguistic uniformity. The chief rules with the assistance of advisers and officials, but at the same time all matters of public policy usually require the approval of a general council open to all adult male members.

      In 1977 the apartheid South African government created an “independent” Bantu homeland for the Tswana, called Bophuthatswana, but it was never recognized by the international community and was abolished with the fall of the official apartheid policy in 1994.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Tswana — (Motswana, plural Batswana) is the name of a Southern African people. The Tswana language, also called Setswana, belongs to the Bantu group of the Niger Congo languages. Ethnic Batswana make up a majority of the population of Botswana. However,… …   Wikipedia

  • TSWANA — Rameau occidental des Sotho, les Tswana vivent au Botswana et dans les pays avoisinants, à l’ouest du Transvaal. Ils constituent probablement la plus ancienne population bantoue d’Afrique australe et se sont parfois mêlés aux Bochimans, avec… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Tswana — Tswana,   Be|tschuana, Be|tschuanen, Volk der Südostbantu im südlichen Afrika; rd. 4,1 Mio. Tswana in etwa 65 Stämmen, darunter einige assimilierte Ndebele und Nord Sotho, leben v. a. im Nordwesten der Republik Südafrika (3 Mio., davon 1,7 Mio.… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • tswana — TSWÁNA subst. 1. s.m. Membru al populaţiei bantu, de pe teritoriul Botswanei şi din vestul Africii de Sud; batswana, bechuana. 2. s.n. Limbă aparţinătoare familiei sotho, vorbită de tswana (1); setswana. [pr.: ţuána] (cf. engl. tswana < tswana …   Dicționar Român

  • Tswana — Cet article concerne la langue tswana (ou setswana). Pour le peuple tswana (ou BaTswana), voir Tswanas. Tswana setswana Parlée en Afrique du Sud, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibie Nombre de locuteurs environ 4 millions …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Tswana — Das Wort Tswana bezieht sich auf: das südafrikanische Volk der Batswana, die Sprache der Batswana: Setswana, die Tswana Religion das Tswana Rind. Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unte …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Tswana — noun (plural Tswana or Tswanas) Date: 1930 1. a member of a Bantu speaking people of Botswana and the Republic of South Africa 2. the language of the Tswana people …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • tswana — ► sustantivo masculino Pueblo bantú de Botswana y de la República de Sudáfrica. * * * o setswana Rama occidental de los pueblos sotho de Sudáfrica y Botswana. Los tswana, que suman 4,1 millones de personas, viven en un entorno de pastizales donde …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Tswana — [ tswα:nə] noun (plural same, Tswanas, or Batswana) 1》 a member of a southern African people living in Botswana, South Africa, and neighbouring areas. 2》 (also Setswana) the language of the Tswana. Origin stem of Setswana moTswana, plural… …   English new terms dictionary

  • Tswana — Tswa•na [[t]ˈtswɑ nə, ˈswɑ [/t]] n. pl. nas, (esp. collectively) na. 1) peo a member of an African people, a division of the Sotho, living mainly in Botswana and in the Transvaal and Cape Province in South Africa 2) peo the Bantu language of the… …   From formal English to slang


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.