Languages of Northwestern Papua - SIL

Two Local Languages in West Papua Province Extinct

Languages of Northwestern Papua - SIL

Languages of Northwestern Papua – SIL

Manokwari, Jubi – The Papua State University in West Papua Province conducted research on local language and culture related to the extinction of two local languages.

Dean of the Faculty of Letters of Papua State University, Andreas Deda in Manokwari on Sunday (27/9/2015) said those languages are the native languages of Tandia and Dusner tribes of Teluk Wondama Regency.

Another language that is currently almost extinct is the native language of Sebiar tribe of Teluk Bintuni Regency.

The research is aimed to protect the local languages and being used in daily conversation among Papuan communities.
“For English Department students, we oblige them to do research and scientific report on local languages for final project in English,” he said. According to him, Papua local languages are still interesting to be researched and developed since most of Indonesian local languages are from Papua. “Of 700 languages in Indonesia, more than 300 are in Papua,” he said.


Deda further explained that in Papua, each tribes or even clans have their own languages. Those languages are bounded with the characteristic of local people. It is found in the previous research that local public art in Papua was expressed into the language through songs that usually used in traditional rituals.

Papuans are spreading in the coastal to mountainous areas with various atmospheres and languages. This is also affecting their character and way of thingking. “No wonder, if the problems in Papua are quite complex and difficult to solve,” he said.

He considered 50% of Indonesian diversity is found in the Land of Papua. It’s a richness of nation that should be maintained with serious efforts. He thought currently the readiness of human resources in maintain the Papuan languages is almost not existed. This condition would adversely affect the presence of the local languages. With modernization, currently there is a phenomenon among Papuans to not consider the local identity including the local language, as something required to be protected. (*/rom)

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