Kalang Sama: The Identity of Bajau People through their Verbal Art

By Saidatul Nornis Mahali.

Published by The Humanities Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Identity preservations among the ethnic groups are one of the main agenda in Borneo. There are many sources of preservation materials such as verbal art. The members of an ethnic group of Sabah known as Bajau use songs to hide their cultural aspects of life and identity in their arts. This paper will using the verbal art sources used to called kalang among the group. This paper will examine the double meaning and cultural aspects potrayed in the song to symbolize their identity among the indigenous groups in Sabah. Therefore, in order to explore the hidden culture in the verbal art, people must view the verbal art through the intermingling process among this ethnic group with others. Coincidently they live neighborly to the other ethnic groups and thus, become trilingual people. Astonishingly many cultural aspects are preserved and the esthetic value in their traditional song still remains. Indirectly, the intermingling process became the strength to maintain and preserve their identity in the modern world.

Keywords: Folksong

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp.63-70. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 611.885KB).

Dr. Saidatul Nornis Mahali

Senior Lecturer, Center for the Promotion of Knowledge and Language Learning, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia

Saidatul Nornis Mahali (Ph.D., in Linguistics). Currently a Senior Lecturer at the Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS), Sabah, Malaysia. Her academic interest include cultural and language research among the indigenous groups in Sabah, with particular reference to the Bajau society in Sabah, Malaysia.


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