Embracing the Past, Present and Future of Bahasa Malaysia

By Regina Hoo

August 2016 FEATURE
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An art and design exhibition, KATA KATA 2100 aims to trace Bahasa Malaysia's linguistic roots throughout history.
How has the national language evolved, and how will it continue to evolve? These are the questions that KATA KATA 2100 hopes Malaysians ask themselves during its month-long exhibit.From its role as a regional lingua franca during the Malacca Sultanate to its present status as Malaysia’s national language, Bahasa Malaysia has evolved through exposure to different cultures over the centuries. It contains a rich mix of loan words borrowed from Sanskrit, Arabic, Persian, Portuguese, English, Tamil and Chinese. The political...

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Regina Hoo

is the deputy editor of Penang Monthly.