IRT with 10 kids, learn from life experience, reference from the internet

Ibo Yuliana Ramasbe, first Papuan woman to write Tok Pisin Dictionary (PNG) (bilingual) – Indonesia

She is a native Papua Guinean woman, not a university graduate, not a linguist, she is just a high school graduate housewife, but able to make a significant contribution to her literacy and language knowledge through the successful writing of the Papua New Guinean Bilingual Dictionary (Tok Pisin) -Indonesia. This is Yuliana Ramasb. This is what he said to Lucky Ireew– Sendarawaseh Center


Many writers in Papua and Indonesia have written story books, novels, short stories, or books on certain topics. But the book of dictionaries, especially dictionaries In two different languages, certainly not many authors. Ibu Yuliana Rumaseb may be the first Papuan woman to write a bilingual dictionary with thousands of words.

Mrs. Juliana is not a linguist, let alone a lexicographer, branch Linguistics Who are learning about crafting techniques dictionary.

She is just an ordinary housewife, but her persistence, passion and life experience led her to write a bilingual dictionary, specifically Tok Pisin (PNG) and Indonesian.

When you meet her, this simple-looking woman looks like Relaxing, on his lap was Tok Pisin’s Indonesian dictionary. The book is very large in light yellow, Tok Pisin is written in black and red with a PNG flag image, while Indonesia is written in red and white.

He started writing this dictionary 6 years ago. He started communicating online in the community on (now his name changed) over ten years ago, to be exact around 2006. In this community there are Papuan children from different regions, even from abroad. There, the Tok Pisin dictionary was put up online, but because it was often deleted and data was lost, they did not continue to interact there. After that, the two along with their sister Renne formed a Facebook group “Let’s Learn Pidgin PNG”. Thousands of members. This FB group lasted for several years, and was finally discontinued. “The problem is that the same questions are repeated over and over until there is no real progress.”

From there, the idea of ​​creating a complete Tok Pisin Indonesian dictionary in book form emerged. This idea was supported by his two brothers, Rene and Jiran, who were willing to help in the process. To be precise, in 2016, Yuliana’s mother began writing this dictionary. Getting started wasn’t easy either, he had to look up references on how to write a dictionary and learn by comparing several popular dictionaries he got from the internet, including studying the history of the Pidgin language.

“There are no specific biblical references, then through the Internet I got 3 online dictionaries, the Tok Pisin Dictionary, the Large Indonesian Dictionary (KKBI), the Indonesian Terminology Dictionary, and two other online dictionaries, all of which I use in Comparative article to write this dictionary. In addition, I also studied references and other information from a socio-anthropological and cultural perspective to make them appropriate in the use and meaning of words and sentences.”

Creating this Tok Pisin-Indonesian dictionary is unique and challenging, especially in terms of grammar, word meanings and usage. In Tok Pisin, a single word can have many meanings, depending on the situation and circumstances when the word is used.

“One word can have more than 20 meanings, people will not understand if we explain only one meaning, but we have to see first, the word is used in any sentence and in any situation, the meaning can be different when the same word is used in different sentences The situation is different,” he said while giving an example, the word “content,” in Tok Pisin is called “Bilum Bilong Pikikini.” Bilum is Noken/bag, Bilong: Dari, while Pikinini is a child. This string of words can have two meanings. First, Noken / bag for children / children, it can also mean womb (female, red).

With this situation, the work of compiling this dictionary has been carefully carried out, that is, the translation of the meaning, then how to put the word into a sentence, and then translating it back into the Indonesian language, if it is not clear enough, added using pictures. “Unlike Indonesian, which already has standard grammar, Tok Pisin doesn’t have standard grammar yet and continues to evolve, so this is a challenge in writing this dictionary,” he explained.

Not only that, but the etymology of the word must also be studied. “Why does this word exist, how this word is formed, where this word appears and so on. I must learn all that, because the historical Tok Pisin language was born out of the needs of the community and continues to grow, especially its use by the peoples of Papua New Guinea, Juliana explained.

With so many differences in words and linguistic structures that differ between the two countries, He makes every effort to write down each word and its explanation and meaning so that the readers or users of this dictionary are not confused when using the dictionary. “That is why this dictionary is dense, because it not only contains words and their meanings in two languages, but there are various examples of sentences as well. to clarify it.”

According to Juliana’s mother, The dictionary he wrote is only the foundation or the beginning, and continued to develop these two languages, I submit it to Okmin Papua University of Pegubin, Cenderawasih Jayapura University and Papua New Guinea universities to develop it.

Her courage in writing this dictionary is also because Juliana has lived in Papua New Guinea for 14 years, worked in a library administration and as a teacher, which made her truly understand the character, culture and language of the neighboring country of Indonesia. It was these decades of life experience that became his capital to learn about Tok Pisin and later became the impetus for writing this bilingual dictionary.

“I was kicked out of the situation I was in Papua New Guinea when I first came there, I didn’t understand Pidgin at all, I could see people talking, their mouths muttering, but I have deaf ears, blind eyes, and a brain in the name of God Almighty. Whatever. It was, he must have gone through the same condition as me, if he got to a place where he doesn’t understand the local language, So I was just excited to help, I just started writing this dictionary.

When asked about the biggest challenge in writing this dictionary, this woman from Biak who now lives in the Netherlands said that dividing her time was the biggest challenge for her. How to raise 10 kids, send them to school, supervise, do housework and also the social work he has to do every day.

Sometimes he writes while accompanying his ten children to study or to do their homework. Sometimes until dawn, when the kids fall asleep, he sleeps for a while and then gets up again to make breakfast and help get his kids ready for school or college. In addition, he also has an obligation to social work, that is, to serve people with disabilities. On the sidelines of the busy wrote this dictionary.

“I am just a housewife with 10 children, I am also a social worker, and I must divide my time well, so that I can finish writing this dictionary. This is my biggest challenge.”

Juliana was born In Manokwari Papua, he received his primary education in Bumakia in Mabe, then junior secondary in Boffin Dougil, and then continued in Sentani. In the 1980s, Juliana continued her education at SMA YPPK Santo Agustinus Sorong. Because he had good grades in German, he was recommended to continue his education at Atmagaya College, Yogyakarta. Juliana refused, opting to enter Uncen through the SIPENMARU exam for the history major. In Uncen, she did not complete her studies due to the situation and circumstances at that time, Juliana moved to Papua New Guinea. Juliana and her family now live in the Dutch windmill country.

For 6 years of writing (2016-2022), his masterpiece is finally complete. The 2,600-page dictionary (later shortened to 1,600 pages) contains over 7,500 vocabulary with examples of pictures and sentences.

He was asked what his motives and enthusiasm were so that in the midst of various challenges and obstacles he was able to finish writing this dictionary. Frankly, Juliana said, her father’s advice and words motivated her to finish writing. “My father always said, if you do something, don’t announce it first, but if you’ve announced it (to the audience), finish it, because if you don’t, people will laugh at you. Those words made me finish writing this dictionary.”

Juliana said she announced writing this dictionary to the public via Facebook a few years ago, and her father’s words became an encouragement to keep going. Write to finish.

This dictionary was then commissioned by Okmin Papua University in the Bintang Mountains to sponsor its publication until its launch which is scheduled to be implemented in 2022.

For him, writing is important, because if you talk about it then People hear, people will surely forget, but by writing it will be stored forever.” When writing, all our thoughts and ideas are properly recorded and stored, and when we write, we can send other people to enter our mind. When we are able to record our writing, we actually We extend our lives for the next tens or even hundreds of years Our bodies will merge with the Earth but our minds and souls can live on this Earth for hundreds of years through our writings.

Juliana advised that this dictionary is important for building communication, especially for Papists (Indonesians). And Papua New Guinea, but more so for the world of science in both countries, and the international community. “This is a challenge for young people to work. I, and I am only a housewife, give this challenge to young people in Papua to move forward and work.”

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