It is believed to be the first in-depth study of the presence of a NRI Malayalee community outside of Kerala. Malayalam is derived from old Tamil and Sanskrit in the 6th century.For cultural purposes Malayalam and Sanskrit formed a language known as Manipravalam, where both languages were used in an alternating style. Vilanilam, former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kerala; Sunny Luke, medical scientist and former professor of Medical Biotechnology at Adelphi University, New York; and Antony Palackal, professor of Sociology at the Loyola College of Social Sciences in Thiruvananthapuram, have edited the book, besides making other contributions to it.Perhaps the skilful choice of timber, accurate joinery, artful assembly and delicate carving of wood work for columns, walls and roofs frames are the unique characteristics of Malayali architecture.From the limitations of the materials, a mixed mode of construction was evolved in Malayali architecture.As they primarily live in Kerala, the word Keralite is used as an alternative to Malayali.According to the Indian census of 2011, there are approximately 33 million Malayalis in Kerala, making up 96.7% of the total population of the state.In all, Malayalis made up 3.22% of the total Indian population in 2001.
They are identified as native speakers of the Malayalam language, which is classified as part of the Dravidian family of languages.
There were a further 701,673 (2.1% of the total number) in Karnataka, 557,705 (1.7%) in Tamil Nadu and 406,358 (1.2%) in Maharashtra.
The number of Malayalam speakers in Lakshadweep is 51,100, which is only 0.15% of the total number, but is as much as about 84% of the population of Lakshadweep.
As per the 1991 census data, 28.85% of all Malayalam speakers in India spoke a second language and 19.64% of the total knew three or more languages.
Large numbers of Malayalis have settled in Bangalore, Delhi, Coimbatore, Hyderabad, Mumbai (Bombay), Ahmedabad, Pune, and Chennai (Madras).