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Is It Bahasa or Bahasa Indonesia?

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Let's cut to the chase:

  • Bahasa on its own means "language."
  • Bahasa Indonesia means "the Indonesian language."
  • Calling "Bahasa Indonesia" as just "Bahasa" is as odd as calling the "the English language" as just... "Language." It doesn't make sense.

Is It Bahasa or Bahasa Indonesia?
Featured article photo by Arif Djohari

In Indonesian, "Bahasa" is used to refer to any languages in the world.

For example:

  • Bahasa Indonesia = The Indonesian language

  • Bahasa Inggris = The English language

  • Bahasa Belanda = The Dutch language

  • Bahasa Jepang = The Japanese language

  • Bahasa Korea = The Korean language

  • and so on

So linguistically, calling "Bahasa Indonesia" as just "Bahasa" does not make sense.

Saying "I'm learning Bahasa," literally means "I'm learning language."

But which language?

Instead, stick to Bahasa Indonesia, or simply Indonesian.

Never "Bahasa."

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