Southern South Asia
DemonymSouthern South Asian
Countries India (South India)
 Sri Lanka
LanguagesMost common first languages:
Time zonesUTC+5:30; UTC+5:45; UTC+06:00
Calling codeZone 9
ReligionsHinduism, Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Irreligion, Tribal, Jainism
Ethnic groupsAryan, Dravidian

Southern South Asia is a geographical area in South Asia, and is the southern region of the subcontinent. Depending on definition, it includes the countries of India (particularly South India), the Maldives, and Sri Lanka.[1][2] It is predominantly Dravidian.[3][4]

Southern South Asia is noted for being the most culturally distinct region of South Asia from Northern South Asia,[5] with greater gender equality.[6][7] There is significant competition between India and China for influence over the island nations of the region.[2]


Southern South Asia was a hub of global trade in ancient times because of its position in the important Indian Ocean corridor.[8] For example, a significant number of Roman products have been discovered in the region.[9][10]

Governments throughout Southern South Asia adopted Sanskrit for public political expression beginning around 300 CE and ending around 1300, resulting in greater integration into the broader South Asian cultural sphere.[11] This significantly influenced the languages of the region, making all of the major Dravidian languages except for Tamil highly Sanskritised.[12][13]

Artisanal production of handicraft articles, metal-working (see Wootz steel) and cloth production were historically important features of the economy in Southern South Asia.[14]

Tamil influence in the region is quite significant, with prominent empires such as the Chola dynasty taking Tamil culture to Sri Lanka and beyond South Asia, and Sri Lanka having an ancient Tamil minority and a Dravidian-influenced majority language of Sinhala.[15][16][17] Chola innovations include various techniques for water resource management,[18] some of which are used today to restore lakes throughout India.[19] During British rule, Madras (now Chennai) became the center of the region, and a stability was created that benefitted Tamils throughout the region; Tamils were also favoured by the British in Sri Lanka over the Sinhalese people of the island. This laid the foundation for resentment and later ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka which lasted for decades.[20]

See also


  1. ^ Cardoso, Hugo. "The synchrony and diachrony of an Asian-Portuguese causal morpheme". Academia.
  2. ^ a b Balances and benefits in Southern South Asia: The Maldives and Sri Lanka in 2021 Aditya Gowdara Shivamurthy
  3. ^ Future potential and the invisible diaspora: New Zealand and South Asia diasporas Robert Didham
  4. ^ Cohen, Walter (2017). "Eurasian Literature through the Eighteenth Century". doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198732679.001.0001. ISBN 978-0-19-873267-9. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  5. ^ Pillalamarri, Akhilesh. "The Geopolitics of South Asian Political Stability". Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  6. ^ Encyclopedia of Modern Asia David Levinson and Karen Christensen
  7. ^ Agarwal, Bina (2003). "Women's Land Rights and the Trap of Neo-Conservatism: A Response to Jackson". Journal of Agrarian Change. 3 (4): 571–585. Bibcode:2003JAgrC...3..571A. doi:10.1111/1471-0366.00067. ISSN 1471-0358.
  8. ^ "Patrick Roberts Made National Geographic 'Explorer'". Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  9. ^ Hoppál, Krisztina; Bellina, Bérénice; Dussubieux, Laure (7 September 2023). "Southeast Asia and the Mediterranean World at the Turn of the First Millennium ce: Networks, Commodities and Cultural Reception" (PDF). Cambridge Archaeological Journal: 1–24. doi:10.1017/S0959774323000264. ISSN 0959-7743.
  10. ^ Dalrymple, William. "Garum Masala | William Dalrymple". ISSN 0028-7504. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  11. ^ Comparing East Asian and Southeast Asian Buddhism: Looking at Traditional China from the Margins John R. McRae
  12. ^ "Setting the record straight". The Economist. ISSN 0013-0613. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  13. ^ Bureau, The Hindu (7 January 2023). "Sanskrit is the mother of all Indian languages: Bhyrappa". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  14. ^ Mielants, Eric H. (2007). The Origins of Capitalism and the "Rise of the West". Temple University Press. ISBN 978-1-59213-575-2. JSTOR j.ctt14bt31n.
  15. ^ "The Sri Lankan Civil War and Its History, Revisited in 2020". Harvard International Review. 31 August 2020. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  16. ^ Perera, Sasanka; Pathak, Dev Nath; Kumar, Ravi (30 December 2021). Against the Nation: Thinking Like South Asians. Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 978-93-89812-33-6.
  17. ^ Kamalakaran, Ajay (23 March 2022). "How a unique Tamil dialect survived among a fishing community in Sri Lanka". Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  18. ^ Angelakis, Andreas N. (2014). "Evolution of Sanitation and Wastewater Technologies through the Centuries". Water Intelligence Online. 13. doi:10.2166/9781780404851. ISSN 1476-1777.
  19. ^ "'Lake Man' relies on ancient methods to ease water crisis". The Times of India. 25 September 2023. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  20. ^ Williams, Victoria R. (24 February 2020). Indigenous Peoples: An Encyclopedia of Culture, History, and Threats to Survival, Volumes 1-4. Bloomsbury Publishing USA. ISBN 979-8-216-10219-9.