lambrtz and Languages

Just now, this [Superman] shared [this link] on Facebook. To understand this, I need not to look farther than my mirror. I consider myself belong to the earliest generation in which this phenomenon starts to be prevalent. By Indonesian standard, even for non-native standard, I speak fluent English. But my proficiency in Javanese, which is supposed to be my first/second language, is limited to the ngoko/”rude” form and very little krama inggil/the “polite” form. That’s like only knowing a half of the language. There are a few reasons of this. Somehow my parents decided to teach me more Indonesian, which I am very fluent in, and only little Javanese. Family members can also speak to each other in ngoko, although with some krama inggil words when referring to the parents (although I usually just replace those words with Indonesian words instead), so it’s no wonder that my krama inggil doesn’t improve much.

I live in Singapore, so there is very little need of knowing and speaking Javanese. There was one occasion though, when I die die had to speak krama inggil Javanese. When I still rented my previous room, I stayed with, well, the Singaporean owner, of course, and a Javanese family also from my hometown (actually our homes are just a few hundred metres apart). The couple’s parents often visited them, and they seemed to speak Javanese more often. So, when I conversed with them, I had to use krama inggil. It felt very awkward, since I didn’t know the polite forms of many words, so at times I had to resort to Indonesian, or mistakenly used the rude forms. Another thing is, older Javanese generations speak veeeeeery slowly, whereas I am known for my fast talk, so the way I spoke krama inggil was like very un-Javanese.

On another occasion, when I returned home last year, my Father took me to his school reunion, in which I talked to some of his friends. At this time, however, I initiated to talk in krama inggil, instead of Indonesian. At home, my Father laughed. He seemed very surprised and was very keen of talking about this to my Mother.

Closing remarks. I talked to my Father just a few weeks ago when he visited me (I am in [Palapa Oath] mode, so I don’t want to return home until I submit another paper), that quite likely I will not have a Javanese wife. I understand very much about the surrounding issues of having girlfriend/spouse of different ethnicity/nationality, but like it or not, with this current condition most women I meet are not Indonesian, let alone Javanese. So the family line from my branch may stop being and speaking Javanese at some point of time.

10 Responses to “lambrtz and Languages”


  1. 1 lambrtz 09/10/2013 at 12:31 AM

    Heh, even this post is written in English.🙄

  2. 2 soegirang 09/10/2013 at 1:51 AM

    dan gugur sudah satu penerus bahasa jawa di singapore sana😦

    Saya sendiri sebenernya dibesarkan dengan Bahasa Indonesia. Walaupun suku yang dominan dalam keluarga adalah jawa (ibu separo banjar separo jawa, dan bapak tulen jawa = 3/4 jawa).

    Saya juga awalnya sangat menggandrungi bahasa asing (terutama bahasa Inggris. Sekalian pamer: Saya dapet nilai 9,8 – cuman salah satu soal – dalam UAS Bahasa Inggris lho…). Bahkan sempat belajar sedikit bahasa Jerman dan Prancis. Tapi semua berubah saat saya ketemu nyonyah :p, dia asli jawa dan mendengar dia bicara kromo inggil sama saya (kadang-kadang sih), rasanya itu beda betul. Ada semacam kepatuhan, segan disana, tapi juga begitu…gimana ya? Ya tahu sendirilah wanita jawa itu begimana :v (lho? ini ngomongin bahasa jawa atau wanita jawa?)

    jadi, lebih baik cari jodoh di Jawa saja. *lha……

  3. 3 Eon Strife 09/10/2013 at 7:31 AM

    1. the Superman’s article : the irritating things, related to this matter is :
    – Indonesian people now when they speak they like to mix-and-match Indonesian and English words.
    – Indonesians unnecessarily adopt English words into Indonesian language even though we originally already have the word : e.g. scientist, is adopted as saintis, and previously we already have a word with the same meaning : llmuwan. Other example : issue, is adopted as isu in Indonesian, even though previously we already have the ‘isu’ word in Indonesian which means ‘rumour’. So if we see a news headline : “A bertekad memberantas isu-isu seputar keamanan kota X”, what does ‘isu’ mean here ?
    2. You’re talking about waifu. You already have somebody in mind ?

  4. 4 jensen99 09/10/2013 at 7:48 AM

    Bahasa Indonesia dan bahasa Jawa terlalu eksis tuk bisa terancam dengan generasi yang nginggris seperti di artikel tersebut. Ada banyak bahasa daerah yang sudah jauh lebih terancam dengan eksistensi bahasa Indonesia.

    Anyway, you’re talking about waifu. You already have somebody in mind ?

  5. 5 Arm Kai 09/10/2013 at 12:50 PM

    Anyway, you’re talking about waifu. You already have somebody in mind ?

    *sorry, can’t resist:mrgreen:

  6. 6 itikkecil 09/10/2013 at 2:35 PM

    Yay! Maridjo kawin(tm) dengan cici adadeh
    My boyfriend is also javanese. both his late father and mother are javanese, but he was born in Palembang and he speaks Palembang fluently rather than javanese. And if he marry me it means that his family will stop speaking in javanese since he is the only child.

  7. 7 lambrtz 09/10/2013 at 11:05 PM

    For you who ask about wife-thingy, well, unfortunately no. It’s just my mind thinking too far ahead.😛

  8. 8 lambrtz 09/10/2013 at 11:21 PM

    @soegirang
    Berarti njenengan born-again Javanese?😛 *eh*

    @Eon Strife
    On mix-and-match: well, it happens everywhere. In Singapore as Singlish, in Malaysia as the rojak language. It is a problem too for the British and the American and other native speakers, that their language develops differently somewhere else in the world, but it’s another story.😛

    On lazy absorption, well I kind of like the older “ilmuwan” word too, and I usually don’t talk “saintis” except when, well, I’m lazy.😛
    But I don’t know about “isu”. Are you sure that it comes from the English issue, and not for another language?😕

    @jensen99
    Ya, itu betul. Makanya itu, di thread Mansup sendiri, aku tanya, seberapa parah sih sebenernya fenomena ini? Kok rasanya masalah kota besar banget.😆 Dan situ betul. Bahasa Indonesia pun sebetulnya juga mengancam bahasa-bahasa daerah di Indonesia. Ya saya ini contohnya yang kena.

  9. 9 lambrtz 10/10/2013 at 12:09 AM

    Now the more difficult part.

    @soegirang, itikkecil

    I tak tahu if I musti tulis in English atau Bahasa Indonesia, since satu dari awak wrote in English dan satu lagi dalam Bahasa Indonesia. Jadi ya..I harap you two tak keberatan kalau I tulis Bahasa Indonesia.😕

    Saya sih begini aja. Ketika dua orang dari dua budaya yang berbeda bersatu (emang Power Ranger), entah dibikin atau otomatis, salah satu akan masuk ke satunya, atau tercipta bahasa rujak, atau malah mereka sama-sama ndak pake bahasa ibu mereka. Mas Soegirang salah satu yang beruntung bisa kembali ke jalan yang benar™😛 dan Mbak itikkecil dapat seorang convert™ dari budaya Jawa ke Palembang, tapi buat orang seperti saya, mungkin ndak semudah itu. Pun untuk orang seperti koh eonstrife di atas. Beliau etnis Cina, tapi etnis Cina pun heterogen dan tersebar di seluruh penjuru dunia, dari studio Hollywood sampai pedalaman Lesotho. Jadi ya saya pikir akan sama aja masalahnya. Mungkin akan menyedihkan buat beberapa, karena seseorang tidak akan meneruskan budaya aslinya, tapi ya buat yang menjalaninya, mungkin itu cuma sarana buat survive dan ya normal-normal aja.😕 Saya sih Deo volente cuman bisa berharap bahwa besok-besok saya masih memegang teguh fakta bahwa saya terlahir sebagai orang Jawa Katholik, dan sebisa mungkin menjaga terus prinsip ini, walaupun Bahasa Jawa saya ndak bagus dan saya bukan religius teladan. Setidaknya biar saya ndak lupa bahwa titik awal saya adalah di sana di sebuah bilik di RS Panti Rapih, Yogyakarta.😛

    *musti distop di sini sebelum ngelantur ke mana-mana*😆


  1. 1 **k Tetangga Selalu Terlihat Lebih Hijau: Impian, Perjalanan, Cinta Kasih, dan Tagline | lambrtz's Blog Trackback on 09/09/2014 at 1:15 AM

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