Indonesia is one of the few countries who has huge amount of languages spoken by its people. There are around 700 languages used by Indonesian. The numerous amounts of languages in Indonesia are mainly caused by its wide diversity of tribe and culture. Almost each tribe in Indonesia has their own language that is different than others.
With the fact that there are lots of languages in Indonesia, there are only three languages that are spoken by most Indonesian. These languages are being the top three in Indonesia because there are huge amount its native speakers speaking the languages in daily basis. So, what are the major languages spoken in Indonesia? Stay tuned.
Bahasa Indonesia as the Official National Language
Bahasa Indonesia is the largest language spoken by Indonesian. Almost in every formal occasion, Indonesian will use Bahasa Indonesia as the language. This is due to the obligation from the UUD 1945 or the Constitution of Indonesia for Indonesian to be able to speak Bahasa Indonesia.
Bahasa Indonesia is also act as a language to unite Indonesian. Most Indonesians will use Bahasa Indonesia to communicate with other people from different tribe or local language. The use of Bahasa Indonesia to connect people from any place and tribe in Indonesia is based on the high chance that every people in Indonesia understand Bahasa Indonesia properly. Therefore, Bahasa Indonesia is used to communicate when Indonesian meets new people from different place or tribe in Indonesia.
The language is also used in most print and electronic media in Indonesia. Bahasa Indonesia is also used in every legal documents and formal events. Due to those reasons stated above, Bahasa Indonesia is considered as the lingua franca in Indonesia.
Regional Language Javanese
Being the tribe with the highest amount of people, Javanese becomes the biggest local or regional language in Indonesia. Java Island, which is the most populated island in Indonesia, has its inhabitant mostly speaking Javanese in their daily activity.
The Javanese as language has some different types based on the geological territory. In East Java, the type of Javanese is way harsher and consists of many swearing words used in their daily communication. This kind of communication is kindly accepted by its speaker not because their hate or angry, but by using swearing words, East Javanese people sense intimacy. That’s kind of extreme communication skill isn’t it?
While East Javanese uses harsh word to show intimacy between the speakers, Central Javanese people do the opposite. The people in Central Java use the soft accent to speak to each other. This is due to the reason that the people in Central Java are more likely to show their respect and friendliness to others. So, be very distinctive to speak in with Javanese so that there will be no misunderstanding happened.
Regional Language Sundanese
While Javanese is the language spoken in East and Central Java, Sundanese is spoken in Western part of Java. Sundanese is the language spoken by the Sunda, a major tribe inhabiting West Java. The Sundanese language is spoken by roughly 15% of the Indonesia’s population. This fact make Sundanese language become the third most spoken language in Indonesia.
By knowing what the major languages in Indonesia are will make you more aware about Indonesian people and culture. Therefore, make use of this information when learning Indonesian or having a trip to Indonesia. See ya next time, lads.