Sunday, July 26, 2009

Bahasa Melayu or Bahasa Malaysia?

Utaya Sankar was pretty upset when “Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP)” didn’t allow him to use the word “Bahasa Malaysia”. I think I know the DBP’s reason and personally, I don’t agree to change the word Bahasa Melayu (Malay Language) to Bahasa Malaysia (Malaysian Language). I think it is wrong to change the name because that is the proper name of the Language. Just like we wouldn’t think of changing the word English to any other names such as American, Australian, or New Zealander, although English is also spoken in those 3 countries. However, people accept the terms American English, Australian English, etc. I think it’s acceptable if we call it Malaysian Malay, as oppose to Indonesian Malay etc. The Malay Language has been used by the Malays as their main language to communicate long before the arrival of the Indian and Chinese Malaysians. Why do we have to change the term Malay Language just because it is now spoken by races other than Malay people?

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