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Indian Subcontinent >> India >> Kerala >> People of Kerala

People of Kerala

The people of Kerala are the Malayalis, and they are of Dravidian stock. They speak Malayalam and are distinguished from the rest of India in that most of them are literate. As a norm they are well read, politically aware and the Hindus, extremely caste conscious. Opinions abound and on streets, in markets, on the walls of buildings, they are on public display.

Kerala is India’s statistical aberration! Women are the majority sex, average life expectancy is closer to that in the US than India, literacy rates are almost double that of the rest of India. Traces of a matriarchal system mean that Malayali women enjoy a degree of social respect denied to women in most other communities. The Nairs are Kerala’s only practicing matriarchy today.

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