Joshua Balata

Joshua Balata

Joshua Balata is an Indian Expat working in Paris. He speaks 9 languages in various levels and has lately acquired the French language to fluency. He moved to a remote farm in France as his business school didn’t help him pick up French. “I made the best friends of my life” he recalls.

He documents his learning journey on YouTube where he collaborates with well-known YouTube channels in the French world.

Joshua is also passionate about food and works at L’Oréal in the world of Data. “This is the best time to be alive” is his source of gratitude.

11:30 - 11:50

A Dive into Dravidian: Unraveling South India's Linguistic Tapestry

What we refer to as ‘India’ today is an English name given, after a river that flows outside the country. Two notable ancient language families have given birth to modern day Indian languages: Indo-Aryan Languages (Hindi is a well known descendant) and Dravidian (Tamil is well known descendant). We will focus on the Dravidian tapestry in this talk, this rich plateau that I’ve had the privilege to be raised in. I speak 3 out of 4 Dravidian languages, all of which are classified as classical Indian languages (there are 6 in all of India). To qualify, a language needs to be more than 1500 years old, have a body of ancient literature that’s not borrowed, and have distinction from a modern offshoot. While the oldest Kannada inscription is from 450 AD, the primary mode of preservation for Kannada has been folklore. As a child, I memorised a lot of ancient Kannada poetry, works of a poet ruler “Bassava” which include stories, and moral values, excerpts of which will be in my talk. I shall also spend time talking about the rich diversity of the Kannada state, Karnataka, home to languages like Tulu that my dad speaks, Kodava, an endangered language from Kodagu, that has more in common with Tamil, but is spoken in Karnataka, Urdu that was installed during the reign of a Persian dynasty and Konkani which is an Indo- Aryan languages spoken in the coastline of Karnataka and celebrates Portuguese borrowings from the 1500s. I may not have the time to go into similarities between modern day kannada, telugu, tamil and Malayalam, but this is an avid sport we practice at home, as my dad is Tamil, my mum Malayalee and I the Kannada boy.