EnglishShow more Special sense of general English comrade, a designation used by socialists or communists for a fellow socialist or communist.
Usually in the plural as a collective term, the comrades:young, usually left-wing activists, particularly militant supporters of the African National Congress; amaqabane, see iqabane;cf. ibutho sense 2 b. Also attributive. Cf. the children (see children), siyayinyovanoun See also vigilante.
1976M. Tholo inC. HermerDiary of Maria Tholo (1980) 101The comrades have stopped the children entering the schools even if there are no lessons.
1986Evening Post 21 Mar. 4Seven bodies were found after ‘Comrades’ and ‘Fathers’ apparently set out to settle differences.
1986City Press 13 July 5On the first two days of her detention she was beaten severely, and asked if she was ‘a comrade member’.
1987N. Mathiane inFrontline Aug.–Sept. 11Came 1985, there was chaos in the country...Comrades and com-tsotsis emerged. Cars were forcefully taken away from owners, people were necklaced.
1988J. Sikhakhane inPace Nov. 61Vigilantes and comrades have especially made life miserable for residents and villagers around Durban and Pietermaritzburg..as a result of the conflict between Inkatha and the UDF.
1989L. Venter inSunday Times 3 Dec. 24‘Comrades’ tried to make townships ungovernable because bungling civilian officials had made them virtually uninhabitable.
1991A. Goldstuck inWeekly Mail 20 Dec. (Suppl.) 42The bitter East Rand warfare between mainly-Xhosa township residents, the ‘comrade’ side, and mainly-Zulu hostel dwellers, the impi side.
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