views updated Jun 11 2018

Harijan a member of a hereditary Hindu group of the lowest social and ritual status, an Untouchable. The word comes from Sanskrit harijana, literally ‘a person dedicated to Vishnu’, from Hari ‘Vishnu’ + jana ‘person’. The term was adopted and popularized by Mahatma Gandhi.


views updated May 29 2018

Harijans (‘Children of God’): see UNTOUCHABLES.