February 8, 2010

Palajahan 01 - Alus

Om Swastyastu.

Hello everyone! Today I want to start the first lesson in my book Everyday Balinese by I Gusti Made Sutjaja. I have been thinking about what and how to post on my blog from this textbook. It must take a lot of time, energy and thought to write any book and I don't just want to simply post word from word from my textbook because of copyright laws, but also I truly respect the author I Gusti Made Sutjaja. My blog shouldn't take the place of his book even in a small way, but instead, I would be pleased to know that because of my blog perhaps someone out there is intrigued enough to buy the book! If many people were to buy the book I suppose it would encourage I Gusti Made Sutjaja to write another book!

It is hard to understand exactly how many different speech levels there are in Balinese and looking at some of my reference books, I see that the number really depends on the linguist or student. In Everyday Balinese two levels are discussed which are most likely the basics and good enough for me to get started with. The first level is called lumrah or common and is as the author writes "used by the ordinary people in the streets". The second speech level is alus or refined which is "used by persons of a higher status or caste such as priests". It seems that the grammar is basically the same for the two levels but there is a huge difference in the vocabulary which is used. I am sure that it is going to be very confusing for me to try to learn both the lumrah and the alus vocabulary at the same time. I will probably ended up mixing the two up and forgetting which word belongs to which class. I shouldn't worry and remember that the important thing is to try. Surely no Balinese will think I am rude if I go to all the trouble of completing this whole textbook and get mixed up with speech levels when speaking in Bali.

How should I try to learn the two different speech levels? This is sort of freaking me out. I really don't think that I can learn the two at the exact same time. I suppose that I Gusti Made Sutjaja, the author, had a very good reason for teaching the two levels at the same time. I will adjust the textbook to meet my needs and will first work through just one level from lesson 1 all the way through to lesson 23 and then come back to the first lesson and start over again, but learning the other level at that time. The question is which should I learn first? I suppose that if I were living in Bali and had many Balinese speaking friends, it would be wiser for me to learn lumrah level first so that I could try out my language skills with my friends. Since I am not leaving in Bali and have only one Balinese speaking friend to whom I sometimes send an email, I will first concentrate on the alus style. The alus style is referred to as being refined. I looked at a few articles written in Balinese in the Bali Post and as far as I could understand, a lot of alus words were being used. It seems best for me to start with the alus style and then later continue on to the lumrah style as I plan to use the articles in the Bali Post as an exercise in the language.

Here is my first vocabulary list. I plan to memorize all these words this week. There are only 25 and I don't think that it will be too difficult for me to learn them by heart in a week. I will list the alus form, the Indonesian translation and finally the English. The Indonesian will be a help to me or anyone else who is reading this blog and has a working knowledge of the language.

Alus - Bahasa Indonesia - English
dados - menjadi - to be, become
dados - boleh - may
désa - desa - village
guru - guru - teacher
jaga - akan - shall, will
jero - Anda - you
kija - ke mana - where
malelancaran - tamasya - to sightsee
matakén - bertanya - to ask
meneng - tinggal - to stay, live
napi - apa - what
niki - ini - this, these
parab - nama - name
ring - di - at, in
saking - dari - from
sira - siapa - who
suwitra - teman - friend
tiang, titiang - aku, saya - I
uning - tahu - to know
wasta - nama - name
Amérika - Amérika - America
Jepang - Jepang - Japan
Kanada - Kanada - Canada
Australia - Australia - Australia

The last four words are not in the textbook but I added them to my list because they are relevant and if possible I would like to learn at least 25 new words a week. And now a few examples using the grammar and words presented in this palajahan or lesson.

Alus - Bahasa Indonesia - English
Dados tiang matakén?
- Bolehkah saya bertanya? - May I ask a question?
Saking napi jeroné? - Dari manakah Anda? - Where are you from?
Tiang saking Fukuoka ring Jepang. - Saya dari Fukuoka di Jepang. - I am from Fukuoka in Japan.
Tiang meneng ring Sanur. - Saya tinggal di Sanur. - I am staying in Sanur.
Dados uningin parabé? - Bisa saya tahu nama Anda? - May I know your name?
Parab tiangé ʻAnalū. Sira parab jeroné? - Nama saya ʻAnalū. Anda siapa? My name's ʻAnalū. What's yours?
Wastan tiangé Hendra. - Nama saya Hendra. - My name's Hendra.
Tiang dados guru. - Saya adalah guru. - I'm a teacher.
Tiang dados mahasiswa. - Saya adalah seorang mahasiswa. - I'm a university student.
Jagi kija? - Mau ke manakah Anda? - Where are you going?
Tiang malelancaran. - Saya main-main. - I'm just traveling and seeing places.

I have relied heavily on my textbook for these example sentences and in the future as my understanding of grammar and vocabulary increases, I plan to use less and less of the textbook. Once again, I strongly suggest that if you are interested in studying Balinese, please buy the same textbook that I am using Everyday Balinese by I Gusti Made Sutjaja. It is a must buy for anything willing to learn a bit of the language. Besides, I doubt that there are any typos in the book! I am not sure about my blog here. If you find any, let me know!

Did you notice that there are two words for the word name in the list above - parab and wastan. I wonder what the difference is? It could be that in the alus speech level, there are some words which are even more polite than others. I am just guessing on this and it would be wonderful if someone could leave a comment in the future. Until then, I will just try to remember that there are two words for name. I shouldn't question everything, but I will make a mental note of these two words.

Is anyone interested in learning Balinese besides me? There must be! Come on! Learn the words above with me! We have one week. If I can do it, I am sure that you can also. Good luck to both of us, or all of us!


No comments:

Post a Comment