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SIL Electronic Working Papers 2010-005

Papuan colloquial Indonesian

Author  Fields, Philip

This paper describes the informal or colloquial register used in the Papua province of Indonesia. This is the middle of three registers, between Standard Indonesian (the government sanctioned formal or “high” language) and Papuan Malay. Previous to this article, almost nothing has been written about Papuan Colloquial Indonesian, while the lowest register (Papuan Malay) has been the subject of many short articles and several important descriptions will soon appear. (Standard Indonesian is, of course, very well described.) This has led some to the false impression that there are only two registers in Papua, Standard Indonesian and Papuan Malay. In reality, the situation in Papua is analogous to the three registers found in the western part of the country in Jakarta and Riau, which have been well described. Papuan Colloquial Indonesian (PCI) fits several patterns found in the other two dialects. The most significant difference between PCI and the other described colloquial Indonesian dialects is that PCI has not developed alternative verb affixation to replace Standard Indonesian meng-, but rather simply drops many prefixes. This paper also shows differences between PCI and Papuan Malay.

  Papuan colloquial Indonesian
Published  2010
Languages  Indonesian [ind]
Malay [msa]
Country  Indonesia
Subjects  Comparison
Descriptive linguistics
Dialect intelligibility
Keywords  Papuan; Colloquial; Indonesian; Malay; diglossia; Papua; dialect; Comparison; Descriptive linguistics; Dialect intelligibility