Professor of Geolinguistics FIB, UI, Prof. Dr. Multamia RMT Lauder SS, M.Mse., DEA explained that the fragility of the existence of Indonesian culture is now also linked to regional languages. It is estimated that up to 266 regional languages are weak and 75 of them are dying.
Unfortunately, this linguistic condition is rarely realized by the public. The low number of speakers, and the absence of a writing system in local languages are also trends that arise in the phenomenon of the fragility of cultural existence.
“Well, in this case linguists can help by developing a spelling or spelling system so that local residents can write down their local customs, food recipes or traditional procedures,” he said on the occasion. a virtual conference entitled “The urgency of preserving regional languages”. As national wealth and supporters of the national language, which is part of the 2021 Media Indonesia Language and Literature Festival, Wednesday 27/10.
With spelling, Multamia continued, regional languages can be passed down from generation to generation. Regional languages which in turn have no spelling will only rely on oral transmission. It is not considered strong enough to transmit the language, especially nowadays there are other challenges as well, where some people are starting to be reluctant to speak the local language.
“Why do we speak regional languages again? For work, Indonesian and English are needed, there is no need for regional languages. Well, he doesn’t realize that the regional language is what determines his identity, ”Multamia said.
Multamia realizes that the effort to maintain the existence of regional languages is no easy task. There must be awareness and understanding of the speaker. Even so, he also explained that the extinction of regional languages resulted in the loss of the nation’s heritage wealth.
In her presentation, Multamia explained that regional languages whose speakers, at least 1000 people, can be classified as languages that still have life force and are still likely to be revitalized. At less than 1000, the revitalization process will be difficult as the transmission of regional languages from the generation of parents to children will be minimal.
For this stage of conservation, another thing that should not be forgotten is the complexity of the linguistic situation in Indonesia. If processed sporadically, Multamia said, any regional languages that were originally threatened with extinction will die faster, resulting in the death of the language.
In an effort to accelerate, he continued, the revitalization of regional languages can first start with dying languages, which, from a speaker’s perspective, can be started with communities that speak less. of 500 people.
“I also thank the Language Agency for completing the regional language mapping. But what I want is literary research to be equivalent to linguistic research all over Indonesia. If we can find and detect that there are 718 languages all over Indonesia, at least we can also get information about regional literature 718. So, we really get the cultural treasures in a comprehensive way, ”he added. (M-2 )