Gesture Dictionary – E to F

Journal of Linguistic Anthropology Number 14 Issue 2

A Repertoire of South African Quotable Gestures
Heather Brookes


Gesture Dictionary
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

eat/food
mapapa (Is)
Two fists with thumbs extended move alternately backwards and forwards to the mouth.

Fancy hairstyle
Mashwengshwang (Is)
Hand with fingers extended, makes two curves upwards from the forehead.

father [male elder]/boyfriend
i-taima (Is)
Side of knuckle of forefinger, with thumb under chin, strokes chin downwards once or twice.

Fatty
Sedudla (S)
Curved arms held out to the sides.

fight
lwa (Z) lwana (S)
Two fists move back and forth as if fighting.

finished (It’s finished/over [the event])
Ho fedile (S)
Hands held out with palms down moved inwards over one another and back out again.

finished (It’s all finished)
E fedile (S)
Forefinger or fingertips of one hand drawn quickly across mouth. Gesturer blows producing a sound as the finger(s) block the stream of air.

forehead (Big forehead)
Sphongo (S)
Hand curved traces curve downwards over forehead.

friendship
bobra (Is)
Sides of first fingers of each hand are tapped together several times.

fuck [old gesture]
nkawuza (Is)
Back of hand hits palm of other hand several times.

fuck [new gesture]
kama (Is)
Elbow bent with forearm held up. Hand at about shoulder level. Fingers and thumb are loosely splayed. Hand makes slight twisting movement from the wrist.

fuck/sex
hlatha/m’davazo (Is)
Fist with thumb tip between knuckles of first and second fingers.

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