Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Re: the travails of living as a linguistic minority person

nov 20th, 2006

i got the following interesting mail from alakananda regarding her life as a malayali in what was formerly part of the kingdom of travancore, and which has now become a part of tamil nadu.

kanyakumari district has the former capital of travancore, padmanabhapuram, also one of its most historic locations, kolachel where travancore vanquished the dutch, etc.

it is sad for malayalis to see this land, which was once the granary of travancore, become part of tamil nadu. on the other hand, because it is not part of kerala, kanyakumari district *still* has acres of paddy fields and other agriculture. the marxist destruction of agriculture in kerala has not affected kanyakumari, which now sends to kerala much of its rice and vegetables.

as usual, it's a story of pluses and minuses.

i know people in kanyakumari district who were formerly malayalam-speaking, but who have now 'converted' to tamil, and have become 'dravida-kazhagam' members! see, conversion can happen even to a neo-semitic ideology like 'dravidanism' :-)

it's like the janissaries and so forth, it makes sense to do what the powerful people want you to do.

here's alakananda's mail:


Reading about what you 'd written about the Nov.1st . Kerala Piravi celebrations, makes me hope that you would read my blog. I wrote about it too, but from a different perspective-that of a Kanyakumari mallu. I know you are a busy person, but it would really make my day if you read it. Please find it at http://alakaananda.rediffblogs.com.

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