Published April 6, 2017
This video was recorded by Kristen Tcherneshoff in the Cameron Highlands of central Peninsular Malaysia. Tamil is spoken by as many as 70 million people, primarily in India and Sri Lanka, where it is an official language, as well as other regions of South Asia, and by diaspora communities worldwide. (Marapun's community of Malaysian Tamils includes as many as four million people.) A Dravidian language, Tamil is related to more than eighty mother tongues, including Kannada and Telugu. Tamil has been a literary language for more than 2,000 years, making it perhaps humanity's only classical language with a widely distributed population of first language speakers.