Malaysian Language

History

The Malaysian language stems from the Austronesian language family. The Malaysian language is actually a standardized form of the Malay language. Despite their similar names, they are separate languages, due to this standardization they have developed differently. Although Malaysian is derived from this language stem, it has developed into a distinct language all of its own. It is often referred to as Bahasa, meaning language, or BM. BM stands for Bahasa Malaysia.

These days, there are many slang words in the Malaysian language, with the younger generation using many words that might be unfamiliar to older generations. New grammatical devices have had to have been implemented, such as plural pronouns. This modern form of Malaysian also uses a lot of English words, as well as many loanwords. This new wave of the Malaysian language is called Bahasa Rojak, or Mixed Language, and many language purists are heavily against it.

Popularity

Malaysian has been the official language of Malaysia since 1957, and is spoken natively by around 10 million people. However, the Malaysian language has a great deal of second language speakers as well, with this number totaling around 18 million people. The popularity of Malaysian is also tempered with the prevalence of the English language, with many professionals choosing to use English simultaneously alongside Malaysian.

The Malaysian language is not only spoken in Malaysia, but in Brunei and Singapore. It is also an official language in Singapore. The country of Malaysia itself also has many different dialects spoken in the ethnic minorities that live outside of the cities.

Language

The Malaysian alphabet is a very interesting one. The Malaysian language uses two alphabets, Rumi and Jawi. Rumi uses a Latin alphabet, while Jawi uses Arabic script. The Rumi writing system is considered to be the official one, as well as the most spoken and written, but the preservation of the Jawi script is also considered important to the Malaysian government.

Malaysian is a language that has taken in many words from other countries. It has many loanwords that are related to religion, such as Arabic from the religion of Islam, for example, and Sanskrit from the Hindu religion. Modern Malaysian now uses many English words, particularly those that are in reference to science and technology, because traditional Malaysian as a language has not had the chance to develop these words naturally. Other languages that have had an influence to some extent on the Malaysian language are Tamil, Persian, Portuguese, Dutch, and to a lesser degree Chinese.

The grammar in the Malaysian language follows the Malay language patterns, with such elements as light stress on certain words, strong compound words, and a lack of grammatical gender. Interestingly, there are no plural words in the Malaysian language, so the words for person and people, for example, are the same.

Why Learn The Malaysian Language?

The Malaysian language is not only one of the most widely spoken languages in Asia, but it shares around 80% of its word roots with Indonesian. This effectively means that by learning one of these languages, you can open your experiences up to two different languages, both with many kinds of dialects and forms.

In terms of business, Malaysia has one of the best track records in Southeast Asia. In the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis, Malaysia recovered quicker than any of the other surrounding countries. International trade is a vital and vibrant part of Malaysia’s economy, and any large business would do well to make connections here.

It is also a beautiful place to take a vacation. With gorgeous white sandy beaches, and many stunning islands, Malaysia is a really lovely country to visit. Learning the Malaysian language will help to make your holiday a memorable one.


1 Comment

  • #1 by marwa on January 1 - 2:54 am

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    alot of people around me talking malay…i want to get what they are saying…

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