General information about Indonesian language.
What is Indonesian?
- Indonesian is a variant of Malay languages. It is the national and official language of the Republic of Indonesia. The name of the language is Bahasa Indonesia, literally, "the language of Indonesia."
- Indonesian is not a tonal language. It is written with Roman script, the same used for writing English.
- Indonesian belongs to the Austronesian language family, which extends across the islands of Southeast Asia and the Pacific.
- Indonesian is relatively easy for English speakers to pronounce. Although it has a complex range of prefixes and suffixes, it is easy to achieve basic mastery of the language.
- The English words: gong, bamboo, orangutan, and sarong are originally Indonesian.
Why Learn Indonesian?
- Indonesia, in terms of its population, is the fourth largest nation and has the largest Muslim population in the world.
- Indonesia is an emerging democracy and plays an important geopolitical role in the world.
- In Southeast Asia, Indonesia is significant because of its strategic position and its wealth in oil and other natural resources.
- The Indonesian archipelago is home to a large proportion of the world’s tropical rain forests, and is the densest (if not endangered) source of biological diversity on the planet.
- Around 200 million people in the modern states of Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei speak Indonesian or Malay (mutually intelligible languages).
- Bali, the Hindu island, and Java, where gamelan and wonderful coffee originate, are located in Indonesia.
Sources: George Quinn’s The Indonesian Way, 2001.
Photo Credit: Sinandoh at en.wikipedia
Published: Friday, July 23, 2010