Language and identity

A reappraisal of Negeri Sembilan Malay language

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Negeri Sembilan, as one of the states in Malaysia, has been greatly influenced by the Minangkabau culture, in particular the Perpatih custom which led to the so-called misunderstanding that Negeri Sembilan Malay language (NSML) resembles or is similar to the Minangkabau language. This article aims to describe the distinctive phonological features of Negeri Sembilan language to mark its identity and therefore prove that it is free from the Minangkabau linguistic influence. This study utilises the Swadesh word list of 100 words to test pronunciation. Thirty informants were involved and they are speakers of the Negeri Sembilan Malay language and speakers of the Minangkabau language both in Malaysia and Sumatera. The research was conducted in Kuala Pilah, Rembau, and Beranang in Malaysia, while in Indonesia the data was collected in Paya Kumbuh, Bukit Tinggi, and Padang. Based on the 100 words tested, this study observed 17 pronunciation patterns in Negeri Sembilan language that are distinct from the Minangkabau language, specifically they are 10 vowel sounds patterns and 7 consonant sounds patterns. From these 17 patterns, 13 only occur in NSML and the remaining 4 patterns occur in both NSML and the Minangkabau language. Hence, it can be concluded that the Negeri Sembilan language has its own distinctive phonological identity, thus distinguishing it from the Minangkabau linguistic features.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-49
Number of pages23
JournalKajian Malaysia
Volume37
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019

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language
Malaysia
Language
linguistics
Indonesia
Sound Patterns

Keywords

  • Identity
  • Minangkabau language
  • Negeri Sembilan Malay language
  • Phonological features

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this

Language and identity : A reappraisal of Negeri Sembilan Malay language. / Aman, Idris; Jaafar, Mohammad Fadzeli; Mat Awal, Norsimah.

In: Kajian Malaysia, Vol. 37, No. 1, 01.01.2019, p. 27-49.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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