Pitjantjatjara is part of the Western Desert Group of the Pama-Nyungan
languages spoken in central Australia by about 3000 people, about 80% of
whom are monolingual. Speakers of Pitjantjatjara call themselves Anangu
(people) and their language is closely related to Yankunytjatjara and Ngaanyatjarra.
Pitjantjatjara has been written with the Latin alphabet since the 1940s and
the spelling system was standarised in 1979 and confirmed in 1987 by the publication
of a Pitjantjatjara–English dictionary.
Uluru (Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) and many other sites are sacred
to the Anangu, and prefer people not to climb Uluru as they believe
doing so desecrates one of their main dreaming tracks.
Sample text in Pitjantjatjara
Ngayuku ini Raelene-nya, ngayulu wangkapai Pitjantjatjara, ngayulu
ngura Areyonga-la. Munu ngayuku nyunytju mama-kulu wangkapai Pitjantjatjara,
ka ngayuku tjamu walkapi Ngaatjatjarra, ka ngayuku kami wangkapai Pitjantjatjara.
Ka ngayuku kangkuru kutjara palumpa pulampa ini Karen-nya munu
Janie-nya, palupula nyinapai Mutitjulula.
Hello my name is Raelene and I speak Pitjantjatjara. I live at Areyonga.
My grandmother speaks Pitjantjatjara and my grandfather speaks Ngaatjatjarra.
My father speaks Pitjantjatjara and my brother speaks Pitjantjatjara too.
He lives at Katukatjara (Docker River) and he has got one little girl and
boy. My cousins live at Mututjulu (Ayers Rock). Their names are Janie and Karen.