Chants tamouls Aux Antilles : un patrimoine entre écrit et oral

Résumé : In Tamil Nadu and in the rest of the Indian world, the textual tradition was designed, retained and transmitted orally from generation to generation. The retaining of the text in writing will occur afterwards. However, some types of traditional knowledge and know-how are still orally transmitted, whereas the written source appears as a recourse in case of failure of the orality. So, both systems, oral and written coexist in India. On the other hand, within the Tamil descendants in Martinique and Guadeloupe, only orality has survived. In the French West Indies, Tamil, which is only used during worship and family rites, has become a sacred language. It seems that a repertory, which could amount to more than four hundred songs, prayers and theater plays, has been retained and transmitted for more than 150 years in these islands. During two short fieldworks in these islands we were able to record about fifty songs. Their analysis has lead us to recognize considerable linguistic changes in comparison with the currently spoken Tamil in India, mainly due to contact with the languages of the islands and the progressive loss of the use of Tamil language. In spite of these changes, we were able to « re-constitute » some of these songs on the basis of texts printed in India at the beginning of the XXth century. Moreover for about thirty years, the West Indians of Tamil origin have been re-establishing contacts with India and Tamil Nadu and have shown growing interest for their ancestors’ language.
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Pré-publication, Document de travail
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Contributeur : Appasamy Murugaiyan <>
Soumis le : mercredi 2 septembre 2015 - 14:50:42
Dernière modification le : jeudi 11 janvier 2018 - 06:18:05
Document(s) archivé(s) le : mercredi 26 avril 2017 - 14:27:57


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  • HAL Id : hal-01191754, version 1



Appasamy Murugaiyan. Chants tamouls Aux Antilles : un patrimoine entre écrit et oral. 2011. 〈hal-01191754〉



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