English in Malaysia

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According to The Encyclopedia of Malaysia: Languages & Literature, p 61, English in Malaysia has been categorized into three levels: the acrolect, mesolect and basilect. The acrolect is near-native. Only those educated in core English-speaking countries from early schooling up to university may be found to speak the acrolect variety, and only a small percentage of Malaysians are proficient in it. As with other similar situations, a continuum exists between these three varieties and speakers may code-switch between them depending on context. Most academics, professionals and other English-educated Malaysians, speak mesolect English. Malaysian English belongs to mesolect, and it is Malaysian English that is used in daily interaction. Main article: Manglish

Manglish refers to the colloquial, informal spoken form of Malaysian English. It is the most common form of spoken English on the street, but is discouraged at schools where only Malaysian Standard English is taught. Imported words are actually minimal except for just a handful of common non-English nouns and verbs in Malaysia. The use of Manglish is therefore a style-based decision. Colloquialisms exist that are not common outside of Malaysia, which are used colloquially as substitutes in other languages in Malaysia. Using Malay, or Chinese grammar in conjunction with English words, is often done quite spontaneously, sometimes even for comic effect. [edit] Malaysian English and British English

In the first half of the 20th century, Malaysian English was exactly similar to British English (BrE) (albeit spoken with a Malaysian accent). However in the post-colonial era (after 1957), the influx of American TV programmes has influenced the usage of Malaysian English. There is no official language board, council or organisation to ensure the correct and standard usage of Malaysian English, because after independence, Malay replaced English as the official language. The University of Cambridge Local Examinations...
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