Rangmalalak’s Blog

June 2, 2009

lexical interference of Minangkabaunesse into Indonesian found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck, thesis Proposal

Filed under: Uncategorized — rangmalalak @ 5:34 am



1.1 Background of the Problem

Language is a basic need of human being to interact each other. As a tool of communication people use it to express their needs, ideas, thoughts, and feelings. It can not be separated from the culture or the society in which it belongs because it is an important part of culture. Furthermore, the use of language is pretty much influenced by the culture and it will change along the changes faced by the people. Related to this, Schendell (2001:55) states that all physical aspects are subject to change and so do languages. The changes faced by the language are caused by many factors, one of them is it comes into contact with others.

When two or more languages come into contact, it brings great effect for those languages which are not realized by the speech community. Language contact may cause changes in the part of language such as at levels of spelling, pronunciation, lexical, and grammatical. In addition language contact also causes a speech community to be bilingual. Also when there is language contact, there will be a tendency to transfer one language item into another language or language interference. People have great tendency to transfer their language into another language because there is a big influence from their mother tongue and the society.

Refer to the explanation above, the writer thinks that the Minangkabau language and Indonesian language are also facing language interference. The Minangkabau language as local language of West Sumatra has close relation with Indonesian. They share many similarities. So that, most of the Minangkabau people can speak Indonesian, especially those who are educated, live in town, and have ever gone to another city. In other words, most of Minangkabaunesse is bilingual. They can speak both languages and sometimes they mix between the two. Naturally, Minangkabaunesse uses the Minangkabau language as language in daily conversation with several interferences from Indonesia. Indonesian is used in formal situation and in printed media. However, the use of Indonesian in printed media can not be avoided from language interference. There is still a habit to transfer the Minangkabau language (as mother tongue) into Indonesia. This can be found in local printed media such as newspapers, journals, and literary work (short stories, novel).

One of the novels (literary work) written by Minangkabaunesse is Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck. This novel was written by Hamka in 1939. Since the social background of Hamka is Minangkabau culture, the language he used inside the novel was mostly adopted from the local language (Minangkabaunesse). In fact, as a literary work, a novel should use national language (Indonesian) because it needs to be considered that the readers come from many regions and social backgrounds. The use of good Indonesian can help reader in reading that novel because different style of language used in a novel will carry different interpretation for different readers.

Novels also play important role as a medium of communication. It connects writer’s mind to the readers’ point of view. Here, interference can disturb the sense of the language used. Interference also shows us the imbalance of the use and the mastery of both languages by the novelist. Beside that, the mother tongue of the novelist influences the way he/she uses language in his/her novel. Language interference found in Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck shows that the novelist did deviation of the use of standard Indonesian which resulted on the readers’ difficulty in understanding the novel. The most important result of language interference in that novel is that it reduced the quality of information the novelist wanted to deliver and caused misunderstanding in interpreting it.

Based on the fact above, the writer wants to describe and analyze the lexical interference of the Minangkabaunesse into Indonesian found in the novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck. It is an interesting topic to be analyzed because there is a great chance for interference to appear. It is caused by the close relationship between the Minangkabaunesse and Indonesian. The interference in that novel also shows the imbalance of language mastery by the novelist that leads to interference and transfer. Then, there is a great influence of Indonesian toward Minangkabaunesse at that time. Finally, the interference items that found in that novel may caused misunderstanding for the reader to catch the meaning of the novel since the meaning of the words interfered are different.

1.2 Identification of the Problem

When second or foreign language is learned, aware or not, the mother tongue of the learner will influence his/her mastery of that language. For example when someone learns English, the way they pronounce words is almost the same when they pronounce words in their own language. This happens to almost all language learners. Another example is when someone masters their national language, for example Indonesian; they tend to transfer the pronunciation, spelling, lexical, and grammatical of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian sense. This is called language interference.

Language interference may occur in written and spoken language. Language interference may give effect on any aspect of language such as phonological, morphological, lexical, syntactical, and aspects. Language interference may also occur in the writing system of second language learner. For example in the writing of elementary school or junior high school students, who are not mastering the languages they learn yet. From those language aspects, the writer wants to focus the analysis on the lexical interference. In this case, the study will be focused on lexical interference of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck based on its types. Also, the writer wants to analyze the lexical meanings of lexical interference that will be found in that novel.

1.3 Limitation of the Problem

Based on the identification of the problem above, the writer limits the research on types and lexical meanings of lexical interference of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck.

1.4 Formulation of the Problem

Referring to limitation of the problem above, the problem of this research can be formulated as follows:

“What are types and lexical meanings of lexical interference that will be found in Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck written by Hamka?”

1.5 Research Questions

  1. What are types of lexical interference of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian that will be found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck?
  2. What are lexical meanings of lexical interference of the Minangkabau into Indonesian that will be found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck?

1.6 Purposes of the Study

The purposes of this research are to describe: First, types of lexical interference of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian that will be found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck, and second, lexical meanings of lexical interference of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian that will be found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck.

1.7 Significance of the Study

This research is expected to give contribution for those who are interested in sociolinguistic study, especially those who are interested in analyzing Minangkabaunesse. This study also offers opportunities for literature students to reveal novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck as one of literary work of Minangkabaunesse after knowing the lexical interference inside the novel and their meaning which may carry new interpretation. Finally, this research is fully expected to be useful and support the next researchers who are interested in language interference and other sociolinguistics study.

1.8 Definition Key Terms

The following is the definition of related terms that will be used in this study.

Lexical Interference: The error in transferring and changing syllable of morpheme, affixes, phoneme, and diphthong of the lexical item of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian language.

The Minangkabau language: Language used by Minangkabau society as their mother tongue and local language of West Sumatra.


Kapal Van Der Wijck: A novel written by Hamka. Hamka is a novelist from Minangkabau. This novel is written in 1939. It is published by PT Bulan Bintang in Jakarta.



2.1 The Minangkabau Language

West Sumatra is one of the provinces of Indonesia which also known as the land of Minang or the Minangkabaunesse. It lies on the west coast of Sumatra Island and is bordered the province of North Sumatra to North, Riau and Jambi to the east, and Bengkulu to the south east. Its ethnic is known as Minangkabaunesse. The people of West Sumatra have a local language known as the Minangkabau language. It consists of number of dialects which vary from region to region. It is one of the important tools of communication in social interaction among the society in West Sumatra. Isman et.al (1978:51) describe that the functions of the Minangkabaunesse are as local language or mother tongue of Minangkabau people, as tool of communication in daily interaction, as symbol of identity of local culture, as symbol of identity of West Sumatra as one of the ethnic in Indonesia, and as an introductory language in elementary school.

According to Jufrizal (2007:6-7) the Minangkabau language is surrounded by several other languages that belong to West Malay Polynesia. In the north of Minangkabaunesse region there is the Batak-Mandailing language, in the east there is the Malay-Riau and Jambi language, in the south it is bordered with the Kerinci language and the Rejang Lebong language and in the west there is the Mentawai language. He adds that Minangkabaunesse uses the Minangkabau language in their daily interaction such as in the economic, trade and socio cultural situation. While Indonesian use in the formal situation and the specific time required.

The Minangkabau language itself has several other sub-dialects. Thus when someone from certain area speaks, she /he tend to speak in his/her own dialect. For example, people from Pariaman, Agam, Bukittinggi, will have different way in speaking. Pijnapple in Moussay (1998:21) says that dialect that represents the Minangkabau language in 1872 was dialect Tanah Datar. Moreover Moussay (1998:21-24) divides the dialect of the Minangkabau language become: Tanah Datar dialect, Lima Puluh Kota dialect, Agam dialect, and Pesisir dialect. Nevertheless, these four dialects can not represent dialects that exist in the community. There are many other dialects that differ from small region with another. He adds that since Padang becomes the central city of West Sumatra, the Padang dialect is used as an introductory language among the Minangkabau people who come from other region. Padang dialect is also the only dialect that can be understood by people from different area to communicate each other.

Seen from its family language, West Malay Polynesia, Minangkabaunesse is one of the dialects of Malay language (Pavre in Jufrizal 2007:7). Indonesian is also a family of Malay language that has been influenced by several other languages such as English and Arabic. In 1870-1900 the orthography system of Minangkabaunesse is Malay-Arabic. At this time the national language of Indonesia is also the Malay language. Thus, after the Youth Pledge in 1828 its status as national language is substituted by Indonesian. Related to the novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck and the language used at that time, it is assumed that language use in that novel is influenced by the Malay language, the Minangkabaunesse, and Indonesian.

In addition Viklund (2008:2) divides the Minangkabau language into four classifications. These classifications depend on the situation and the condition when that language is used. There are cultural language (ragam bahasa adat), religion language (ragam bahasa surau), youth language (ragam bahasa parewa), and daily use language (ragam bahasa biasa). However, the Minangkabau language today can not be put in the same classifications above. It has already faced many changes because the Minangkabaunesse themselves have changed so far.

One of the changes faced by the Minangkabau language can be seen from the forms of the language. The Minangkabau language today is influenced by many other languages such as English, Arabic, and Indonesian since it contacts with them. The most influencing language toward the Minangkabau language is Indonesian. Both of them are family languages of Malay, in other words they are daughter languages. That is why they share many similarities in the phonological, morphological, and lexical level. However, Jufrizal (2007:9) says that even though the relation of the Minangkabau language and Indonesian is close, there are some differences that are found. In this case the Minangkabau language plays as recipient language and Indonesian as dominant language. As a recipient language it tends to adopt Indonesian or to transfer its items into Indonesian in order to get high prestige in language use. The adoption and transfer also shows the Minangkabaunesse as bilingual ethnic.

In conclusion, the writer agrees that the Minangkabau language used today is different from it was in the past. The Minangkabau language in the past was influenced by the Malay language, the Arabic language, and the Indonesian language, while today the Minangkabau language is much influenced by Indonesian and English. It is also clear to say that the Minangkabau language is one of language that has many dialects. It enables the other researcher to analyze the language and the dialects of the Minangkabaunesse.

2.2 The Concepts of Bilingualism

Bilingualism is a world wide phenomenon. It happens in almost all of the nations. Indonesia is one of them since it is a multicultural and multilingual country. Bilingualism is not bad or good if it is seen from linguistic point of view. Someone can not also blame bilingual as a people who have low attitude toward their language. In daily interaction for example, it is often found and heard that people in the society can speak several languages such as the Indonesian language, the Betawi language, the English language and so on interchangeably.

In sociolinguistic study, bilingualism is a common thing when there is interaction between the societies or the languages they use. Tarigan (1988:2) says that bilingualism is using two languages and bilingual is a person who can speak in two languages. Moreover, Weinreich (in Tarigan 1988:2) says that bilingualism is the ability to use two languages interchangeably. Here it can be said that language used in order to be bilingual can not limited in foreign language such as English only, but also in any languages that someone can speak.

In general, the habit of people to speak in two or more languages is influenced, at least, by two factors. There are social and psycholinguistic factors. Seen from the social factor, bilingualism happens since there are social conditions that lead people to speak in two languages such as trades, prestige and so on. In psycholinguistic factor bilingualism happens because there is a problem in psychology of someone. Wardhaugh (1986:94) states that it is a normal requirement of daily living that people speaks several languages which carry specific goals such as purpose of trade, contact with others, and outside the world of wider society. So, people from different speech community will be able to interact if both of them can speak the languages. In addition to this, Tarigan (1995:11) states that there are at least eight factors that cause bilingualism. There are politic, culture, economy, military, history, religion, demographic, and ideology. These eight factors may cause a person to speak in two languages.

In addition to this Tarigan (1988:40-49) adds that bilingualism is the problem of social and psycholinguistic. He explains that language is a part of someone’s identity, and there had been two researches that show bilingualism as a problem of psycholinguistic. First is bilingualism of adult and, second is bilingualism of children. He adds that there are three problems causing bilingualism of children seen from psycholinguistic point of view. First, it is related to the development sequences of a child when they acquire two languages at the same time. Next, it is related to the language interference among languages that may cause damage to the children in acquiring one of them. Finally, it is related to code switching.

Beside bilingualism is the ability of people to speak in more then two languages, it is also marked by the exceptional situation where people can use more then one language, not in the form of code switching. For example someone speaks Minangkabaunesse at home but he/she uses Indonesian at the public area. In line with this, Weinriech in Pranowo (1996:9) divides bilingualism into 3 categories. First, compound bilingualism that is the ability of someone in using one language is better then other language they master. Second, coordinate bilingualism that is the ability of someone in using the two languages are the same. Third is sub-ordinate bilingualism; the level of language mastery of someone. When someone speaks in her or his L1 they often transfer the elements of their L1 into their L2. In addition Pranowo (1996:10-12) conclude that bilingualism can be divided into three. 1) Based on the level of mastering (inception, coordinative, compounding, subordinate), 2) based on the language status (horizontal, vertical/diglossia, diagonal), and 3) based on the ability of the speaker (productive and receptive).

In short, bilingualism is a complete study because it is not only involve the physical process of speech, but also the internal language process in the mind and the relation between the individual and two or more linguistics and socio cultural situation where he lives. Also, bilingual it self is caused by many factor. However the most important point for bilingual to appear is that there is contact language. Overall, the writer agrees with the theories about bilingualism above. Minangkabaunesse also meet the criteria of bilingualism since it is a culture with various dialects, and subcultures.

2.3 Language Contact

Human being are changing all the times, includes all aspects of life. Language is also changing. Language actually does not come into contact each other, but it is the speakers of the language who are in contact. Their attitude towards each other will affect the way they speak. So, when people are communicating with others who have different language, actually the language is already in contact.

According to Croft (2000:201) the nature of contact between two societies can then be describe in term of the nature of lingueme flow from one language to the other, via bilingual speakers. Lingueme flow is a function of two factors; associated with innovation and propagation. The first factor is the degree of bilingualism of speaker in the two societies; this will determine the amount and direction of lingueme flow. The second factor is the degree of group identification of the speaker in the two societies. The second factor is particularly important when there is a high degree of bilingualism: will the speakers of the original language shift completely to the acquired language, or will they resist, and to what extent they resist.

Thomason (2001) says that there will be two possible scenarios for change in contact situation. First is lexical borrowing from language one into language two. Second is where structural interference from one language leads to change in language two. She added that there must be degree of bilingualism in the community for interference to take place. Furthermore, Thomason and Kaufman (in Croft 2000:201-202) divide language contact phenomena into those that have linguistic effects on the original language of society coming under the influence of another society, and those that have linguistic effects on the acquired language. The effect of language contact on the original language is borrowing. While the effect of language contact on the acquired language is substratum interference.

In addition, Wikipedia (2009:1) says that language contact occurs when two or more languages or varieties interact. Language contact can also lead to the development of new languages when people without a common language interact closely, developing a pidgin, which may eventually become a full fledge creole language through the process of creolization. Language contact is an abstract one. Sometimes it happens unconsciously. It brings effect for those languages that involved in contact; the positive and the negative effects. The positive effect, in one side, language contact can enrich the vocabulary of the target language, while the negative side is that it may cause language shift, language change, and language death if one of them is dominant.

Furthermore Wikipedia (2009:1-5) explains that the result of language contact may occur in; (1) borrowing of vocabulary (the most common way that languages influence each other), (2) borrowing of other language features (such as morphology and grammar), (3) language shift (the replacement of one by the other and commonly occur when one language has a higher social position. This can also lead to language extinction), and finally (4) stratal influence (a profound impression on the replacing language, leading to the development of a new variety). In addition, (5) mutual and non-mutual influences, (6) linguistic hegemony (a language’s influence widens as its speakers grow in power), (7) dialectal and cultural change (change may be manifested in particular dialects, jargons or register, (8) sign language are also seen as result of language contact.

The effect of language contact to the language one may be direct and indirect. Thus, Thomason (2001) divides two basic kinds of contact and the result for the language. The first one is direct transfer where the effect is immediate, mostly with alteration in the structure of recipient language. Second is delayed effect contact, the effect is not immediate because there is no structural upheaval in the recipient language but a gradual penetration due to prolong exposure to another language by large bilingual section of community. In line with this, Schendell (2001:55) says that one language may act upon and influence each other in a wide range of ways such as; in the adaptation of feature of pronunciation, the borrowing of words, or the modification of grammar.

Language interact each other when the speaker of the language interact with other communities. In other words, language contact does not only occur directly. Language contact also occurs by using any medium, for example mass media, televisions, radios, and literary works. These media play roles in transferring one language into others. So the reasons for language contact are caused by many factors. According to Sankof (2001:3-5) there are two factors of language contact, that is internal and external factors. The external factors are related to the socio historical context. Language contact is resulted from wars, conquest, colonialism, slavery, and migration-forced and otherwise. While the internal factor of language contact is linguistics inter-influences: the phonological and the lexical level. Meanwhile Schendell (2001:55) states that since languages and speakers in contact are rarely of equal political, economic or social status and power, the less powerful or prestigious group is frequently disadvantaged.

In conclusion it can be said that the interactions among speech communities may cause language contact as well as socio-cultural change or contact. The reasons for language contact to occur can be seen from internal and external factors. Economic, colonialiation, education, and information and technology are the example of external factors. As language contact each other it will bring positive and negative effect for both languages. The positive one, it can enrich the vocabularies of those language, while in negative side it can cause language shift, language change and language death. This is the examples of the internal factors of language contact. In contact with Indonesian language, Malay, English and other languages, it is possible for the Minangkabaunesse to face language shift and language change.

2.4 Language Transfer

Indonesian and Minangkabaunesse are languages which have close relation. It means that they share many similarities at the level of phonology, morphology, lexical, semantic and syntactical. As daughter languages it is easy for both speech communities to understand each other. However for those who can not master well their L1 and L2 (Indonesian) there will be difficulties in using these languages. It will cause the adaptation and transferring language between them. Parera (1997: 98) says that the more familiar and frequent the interaction between the L1 and L2 the higher the possibility of interference, code switching, and code mixing. He adds that transfer among languages not only possible from L1 to L2 but sometimes there is transferring from L2 to L1 at some points.

When two languages are in contact there will be tendency to do transfer, interference, borrowing, code mixing, and code switching. Bilingual speech communities have great chance to do transfer and interference. Lado (1967:14) describes that transfer occur when someone wants to speak and to hear foreign language he is learning. His or her habit can not be eliminated, thus they choose wrong code. The result of this is that, he transfers the entire sound system (such as phonemes, their distributions, the pattern of the syllables, of words, the pattern of sentences and the meanings. In line with this Odlin (1989:27 in Ellis 1994:301) defines, transfer is the influence resulting from the similarities and differences between the target language and any other language that has been previously and perhaps imperfectly acquired.

In addition, Wikipedia (2009:1) says that language transfer (also known as L1 interference, linguistic interference, and cross meaning) is refers to speaker or writer applying knowledge from their native language to a second language and it may occur in any situation when someone does not have a native level command of a language, as when translating into a second language.

Furthermore, Parera (1997: 122-133) says that Transfer is a process in language learning in which there is influence of L1 (mother tongue) toward L2 (second language). Transfer can not be separated from second language learning. It means that when someone does language transfer, the process may conscious and unconscious. He adds that transfer happen when someone is not fully mastering L1 and L2 fully so he/she tend to transfer between them. He also divides language transfer into two; positive and negative transfer. Positive transfer happens when there are similarities between L1 and L2. While negative transfer occurs when there are no similarities between the languages. Negative transfer it self characterize into four. There are omission, addition, malformation, and disordering. Scovel (2001:45) says that negative transfer is linguistic behavior in the mother tongue to the new linguistic pattern of the second or the target language. This occurs only when the structures are different. If the linguistic structure of the mother tongue are identical with those of the target language, there is positive transfer- and thus virtually no interference.

In other hand Wikipedia (2009:1) sates that positive transfer occur when the relevant unit or structure of both languages is the same, and it can result in correct language production, correct meaning of acceptability. While negative transfer occurs when speaker and writer transfer items and structures that are not the same in both languages. The greater the differences between the two languages, the more negative transfer can be expected. Here, it can be said that negative transfer resulted on error transferring.

According to Caroll in (Parera 1997:130) when student do language transfer it may include to cognitive transfer. Here, transfer happen when it is planning and the student is choosing a code in a language. It means that transfer done by the people consciously. In addition Wikipedia (2009:2) says that consciously, learners or unskilled translator may sometimes guess when producing speech or text in second language because they have not learned or have forgotten its proper usage. Unconsciously, they may not realize that the structure and internal rules of the languages in question are different.

Ellis (1994:315) states that the condition that promote and inhibit transfer or constraints on transfer can be divided into six. There are (1) language level (phonology, lexis, grammar, and discourse), (2) social factors that is the effect of the addressee and of different learning context on transfer, (3) markedness; the extend to which specific linguistics features are ‘special’ in some way, (4) prototipicality; the extend to which specific meaning of a word is consider ‘core’ or ‘basic’ in relation to other meaning of the same word, (5) language distance and psychotypology; the perception that speakers have regarding the similarity and difference between languages, (6) developmental factors; constraint relating to the natural process of inter language development. He adds that those constraints are not the only constraining factors. Non-structural factors such as an individual learner differences (such as personality and age), and the nature of task a learner is performing, are also constraint L1 transfer.

Based on the theories of language transfer above it can be summed up that transfer is the result of the unfully master of foreign language that the learner learns and they tend to transfer their L1 into L2 when they can find any correct code in their L2. This may do consciously and unconsciously. Transfer also divides into two; positive and negative transfer. Negative transfer occurs when there are errors when someone does transfer. Error in transfer is also called as language interference.

2.5 Language Interference

Language interference also calls negative transfer. This is caused by any language contact that happens at bilingual and influences each other or between L1 and L2. The interaction between L1 and L2 will be more intensive when the quantity of bilingual who uses that two languages greater. It means that the intensity of the interaction becomes greater. So the effect or cross influence between the two also more intense. In addition there are three factors that are involved in language interference, the source language, the recipient language, and the element of interference.

Boey (1975:109) states that language interference in learning situation is students’ habit of perceiving, performing, and tendency to speak L2 with the intonation or word order of his L1. He adds that not all error in L2 learning can be accounted for interference from L1. In addition Krashen (1988:41) says that interference is error that shows the influence of the first language are simply the result ‘falling back’ on the first language when someone lack of rule in their second language. Moreover he states that interference occur when the L1 and L2 rules are different and resulting errors.

Language interference is the transfer of elements of one language to another at various levels including phonological, grammatical, lexical, and orthographical (Berthold, Mangubhai, and Batorowicz (in Skiba 1997:1-5)). Skiba (1997: ) also states that analyzed from the context of bilingualism interference are not code switching on the basis that it supplements speech. He concludes that when code switching is to compensate for a language difficulty it may be view as interference, and when it is used as a sociolinguistics tool it should not. However, Parera (1997:105) states that interference is used to refer to interaction of languages such as linguistic borrowing and code switching that happen when a language is in contact.

In addition to this, Weinriech (in Parera 1997:105) defines interference as those instances of deviation from the norm of either language which occur in the speech of bilinguals as a result of their familiarity with more than one language. For example, as a result of language in contact, will be refer to as interference phenomena. In contrast with this statement, Parera (1997:106) says that those who are interested in contrastive analysis argue that the occurring of interference caused by unfamiliarity of L1 speech communities with the second language they learn L2. He also argues that the use of interference is better refer to bilingual who are conscious and familiar to use both languages in order to search for information or to show prestige.

The differences between language transfer and language interference is an abstract and confusing one. People may get difficulties in differentiate them because they are interrelated each other with language contact, bilingualism, borrowing, code mixing, and code switching. However from the theories that have been explained before, it can be said that both, language transfer and language interference are process of language contact and both languages involved are influence each other. They also cause errors in language uses by the speech communities. However, Ellis (1994:310) says that the interference in bilingual was motivated by social factors, was bi-directional and increased with proficiency in the two languages; interference in language learning was not socially motivated, was unidirectional, and decreased as the learner become more proficient. Diagrammatically, Parera (1997:106) describe the differences between the two as:

INTERFERENCE (bilingualism) TRANSFER (learning situation)

In conclusion, interference is negative transfer that resulting error in language use. Interference also occurs in bilingual situation at all levels of language such as phonology, morphology, lexical, syntactical, and grammar. Interference also occurs unconsciously. Furthermore it can dismiss when someone have master second language they learn fully and when there is a balance between L1 and L2 mastery. In the case of Minangkabaunesse, interference also occurs in bilingual situation. This is so because Minangkabaunesse is a bilingual culture. The minangkabau people can speaks both the Minangkabau language and the Indonesian language. Their familiarity of the language caused interference and transfer when they communicate. Related to the novel, the writer agrees that interference occur in bilingual situation and it is caused by the difficulties in using both languages by the novelist.

2.5.1 Types of Language Interference

From the explanation about language interference and language transfer above it is clear that language interference is also called negative transfer. It occurs as a result of the failure in using both L1 and L2. Weinriech (1953:14-47) divides type of language interference into three. There are (1) phonological interference, it occurs when a bilingual speaker re-translate or re-produce his/her L1 by using the appropriate phonemes in his L2. (2) Lexical interference, it occurs when bilingual speaker use two or more part or structure of different languages in a single word or lexicon. (3) Grammatical interference, it occurs when a bilingual speaker identifies morphemes, class of morpheme in language chain in syntaxes and uses it in the speech act. This is emphasized by Suwito (1982:55), he says that language interference occur in all aspects of language such as phonology, morphology, syntaxes, lexis, and semantic.

According to Grosjean (1989:9) in Pozos (2008:165) there are two kinds of interference. First static interference which reflect permanent traces of one language on the other (such as foreign accent), and second the dynamic interference which is the ephemeral accidental intrusions of the other language (as in the case of accidental slip on the stress pattern of words due to the stress rule of the other language). Furthermore, Aslinda (2002:131-136) divides lexical interference of Minangkabaunesse into Indonesian become six types. The first one is replaced the syllable of the morpheme of the Minangkabaunesse’ lexical item into Indonesian. This is appearing in the form of sound or the structure of a person’s L2 from his/her L1. Second, changing the bound morpheme (prefix and suffix) and the base form of lexical items of Minangkabaunesse into Indonesian. The third is changing the phoneme and the syllable of the morpheme of the Minangkabaunesse lexical items into Indonesian. Fourth, changing the diphthong of the Minangkabaunesse lexical items become the syllable of morpheme of Indonesian. Fifth is deleting the phonemes of lexical items of the Minangkabau language. Sixth is transferring the lexical item of the Minangkabau language into Indonesian.

Moreover Dyakov (2008:2-13) divides language interference into two classifications: linguistics and extra linguistics principle. From linguistics principle, he subdivides language interference into: (1) graphic interference influences the development of writing system as well as the spelling principle of the national orthography in general and separate lexical elements in particular, (2) lexical interference influences the development of vocabulary as well as lexical modernization, (3) phonetic interference influences the phonetic structure of a language, and (4) grammar interference influences the grammar structure of a language.

He adds that the extra linguistics principle is very closely bound with the concept of cultural and historical area that is depending on the influence of the three basic factors: religion, politics, and economy. He subdivides the extra linguistics principle into conscious and subconscious interference. Both of them is dealing with psycholinguistics principle. Subconscious interference is spontaneous and takes place under various extra linguistics factors such as language contact. While conscious interference influences a language and causes changes in its inner structure. In addition, from linguistics principle, he also subdivides language interference into communicative interference (immediate contact with speaker of other languages) and model interference (religious and political and or cultural influence).

It is clear to conclude that interference occurs in all aspects or levels of languages such as phonology, morphology, lexical, syntactical, grammar, and semantic. Furthermore, language interference not only occurs and influences aspects of a language, it also influences the non linguistics level such cultural, historical, religion, and economy, politic. Thus, interference on the novel may cause many difficulties in understanding it.

2.5.2 Factors of Language Interference

Since interference occurs in all aspects of language such as phonology, morphology, lexis, syntax, and semantic, it can be said that interference are caused by the factors inside the language. In other words language interference may caused by the changing of the internal structure of a language. Moreover, language interference is also a phenomenon of language contact and bilingualism. It means that, its occurrence can not be separated from society and cultural aspect where it belongs. Thus, Suwito (1982: ) states that the non-linguistics factors influence the use of language include language interference phenomena. The main point of non-linguistics factors influenced the language use are social and situational factors. Language is the main factor in a society.

Basically, there are two main factors that cause language interference; linguistic and non-linguistic factors. Related to the interference of Minangkabaunesse into Indonesian, the interference is also caused by those two factors. The relationship between the Minangkabau language and the Indonesian language are very close. They belong to one language family that is Malay Austronesia. Since their language aspects are almost the same, as a recipient language or community, Minangkabaunesse tends to transfer or to interfere their language into Indonesian. It also caused by other factors such economic, education, trade, literary, mass media, and many others. Beside that, there are also feeling of prestige and pride. The history of the society of both languages also can not be ignored since it gives contributions to the language contact.

In line with that, Aslinda (1996) gives several factors that cause language interference. They are communication, interaction, cognate language, education, and place of living. Aslinda (2002:138) says that based on linguistic factor, the relationship between the Minangkabau language and the Malay language occur because of the regular correspondence of the two languages. It can be seen from the examples:

Minangkabaunesse Indonesian Malay

  1. /ok/ /ab/ /ab/

Lambok Lembab Lembab

Base on this regular correspondence, it produces interference like

kicok —————————- kicab

  1. /ua/ /ur/ /ur/

Ukua Ukur Ukur

Ikua Ekor Ekor

Base on this regular correspondence, it produces interference like

Pudua—————————– Pudur

  1. /ia/ /il/ /il/

kaia kail kail

asia hasil hasil

Base on this regular correspondence, it produces interference like


  1. /a/ /e/ /e/

anau enau enau

pandam pendam pendam

Base on this regular correspondence, it produces interference like


In short, language interference especially lexical interference is caused by three factors. They are (1) individual factors, this may cause by the imbalance of the speaker in using the language they mastered. It is also dealing with psycho-linguistics of the speaker. (2) Linguistic factors, this may be caused by the similarities of the languages at the level of phonological, morphological, lexical, syntactical, and semantic. (3) Non-linguistics factors, this may include the cultural and historical factors of the language.

2.6 A Brief Review of Word Formation

Some words are free form and some others are not. It means that a word can stand alone and does not need other form, can be separated from other free forms in its front and its final position. In addition Robin (1989:184-188) says that word can be identified and delimited as grammatical unit that posses single meaning, or convey a single idea and has free form. For example, in English ‘man’ is a word, and so is ‘manly’, because though ‘man’ can stand alone, -ly can not.

Words are made up of meaningful units (morphemes). Morpheme isolates certain minimal units meaning. Also, a morpheme can be realized as one phoneme such as the ‘plural’ /s/ or more than one phoneme such as ‘cat’ /keit/. Some morphemes are called lexical morpheme, have meaning in and off themselves; others are called grammatical morpheme, specify the relationship between one lexical morpheme and others. A morpheme which can meaningfully occur alone is called a free morpheme or a root. For example, “ambiak” and “bukak”. However bound morpheme must occur with at least one other morpheme. For example, morpheme “-an” in the word “ambiakan”, can not stand alone, it needs other free form. Thus, Robin (1989:196) classifies bound morpheme as affix and free morpheme as a root.

Affix is a morpheme which is added to the front or the final position of words. Affix is also called bound grammatical morpheme that can be subdivided into two; prefix and suffix, depend whether they are attached to the beginning of lexical morpheme as in depress. Verhaar (1999:107) states that among the morphological process, the most important process is affixation. He classifies affixes into four. They are (a) prefix; it is added in the beginning of word or base. (b) Suffix; it is added in the final position of word or base. (c) Infix; it is inserted into the word or base. (d) Confix (also called simulfix, ambifix, or sirkumfix); it is added in the beginning and the final position of the words.

Chaer (2003:177-195) says that in affixation process there are three elements that are involved; the base form, affixes, and grammatical meaning resulted. Seen from the position a suffix attach the words, he subdivided affix into prefix, suffix, infix, confix, interfix and transfix, and also ambifix and circumfix. He adds that in morphological process there are six processes involved; affixes, reduplication, composition, internal modification conversion, suplesion, compounding, and productivity process of morphemes. In line with this, Wikipedia (2009:1) divides affixes into eleven. There are prefix, suffix/postfix, infix, circumfix, interfix, duplifix, confix, transfix, simulfix, suprafix, and disfix. Prefix and suffix are extremely common term while infix and circumfix are less so, because not all of languages use them in morphological process, especially European languages.

Related to the Minangkabau language, Hoa Nio (1979) says that there are two morphological processes in the Minangkabau language: affixation and reduplication. He adds that morphologically, there are also two classification of word in the Minangkabau language: mono-morpheme words and poly-morpheme words. According to Moussay (1998:66-68) there are 24 prefixes in the Minangkabau language; ba-, bar-, di-, ka-, maN-, pa-, paN-, par-, sa-, ta-, tar-, baka-, baku-, bapa-, bapar-, basi-, dipa-, dipar-, mampa-, mampar-, mampasi-, tapa-, tapar-, tasi-. For example in the words ba-salang, bar-anak, di-agiah, ka-andak. In addition there are also 5 suffixes in the Minangkabaunesse. They are –an, -i, -kan, -lah, -nyo. For example are buai-an, sakik-i, kalah-kan, io-lah, elok-nyo. There are also 50 confixes in the Minangkabauness. Whil there are 2 infixes in the Minangkabu language; -am-, -um-. For instance Pamuncak comes from puncak, turun tumurun comes from turun.

In conclusion, a morpheme is a short segment of language that meets three criteria. First, it is a word or part of the word that carries meaning. Second, it can not be divided into smaller meaningful without violation of its meaning or without meaningless remainders. Finally, it recurs in differing verbal environment with a relatively stable meaning. To form a word, there are also several ways that can be applied. Furthermore, word formation of a language may be the same and may be different with other languages. One language may have suffixes, infixes, and prefixes in forming their words, some other may only have suffixes and prefixes. Thus it is clear that word formation is a way to form words by adding and combining a bound morpheme or more with a free morpheme.

2.7 Lexical Item

Lexeme or lexical item is the smallest unit in the meaning system of a language that can be distinguished from other similar unit. A lexeme is an abstract unit. While, Wikipedia (2009:1) defines lexical item as a single words or words that are group in a language’s lexicon. For example “cat”, “traffic light”, “take care of”, “by the way” and so on. Lexical items are those which can be generally understood to convey a single meaning, much as a lexeme, but are not limited to single words. Lexical items are like seems in that they are “natural unit” translating between languages, or in learning a new language. It is sometime said that a language may consist of grammatical lexis and not lexicalize grammar.

A lexeme may occur in different form in actual spoken or written sentences, and regarded as the same lexeme even when inflected, for example; in English all inflected forms such as give, gives, given, giving, and gave would belong to the same lexeme give. In addition, Cruse (1997:35) points out that lexis or word is the smallest element of a sentence which has positional mobility-that is, the smallest that can be moved around without destroying the grammaticality of the sentence (ignoring any semantic aspect).


Joanne meets Pamela

Pamela meets Joanne

Pamela Joanne meets

Those three sentences have the same words involved. They can move around without destroying the grammaticality of that sentence; however the meanings of the sentences are different. After moving the elements of the sentence in such away, we can say that words or lexis can be moved around as long as it carries meaning to the sentences grammatically.

According to Parker (2000:168), one rather obvious stylistic dimension the speakers very from one situation to another is vocabulary. When speaking or writing in a more formal register, the speaker’s choice of word may lean toward polysyllabic words rather then their shorter equivalent. Likewise, words borrowed from Latin and Greek tend to be more formal than native Germanic items: dental (from Latin) is more common than tooth and lexis (from Greek) is more usual then word.

According to Parera (1994:26) in its relation to meaning, a free morpheme has lexical meaning, while bound morpheme has grammatical meaning. For instance in the word “keibuan”, we can derive it becomes ‘ke-ibu-an’. Ibu has lexical meaning as noun, while ‘ke-’ and ‘-an’ has grammatical meaning as confixes.

In conclusion, a word or lexical item may consist of more then one lexeme but they still have one meaning. It can be lexical or denotative meaning and it can also have connotative meaning. However, a word or words may also have only one meaning, for example denotative meaning only. Several same words can form sentences by moving them around, but the meaning of those sentences will be different. The meaning of words can also differentiate by its grammatical function, such as prefix and suffix.

2.8 Related Previous Studies

There are several studies that have been conducted related to language interference namely, Native Language Interference in Learning a Second language; Exploration case study of Native language Interference with Target Language by Baljit Bhela (2000), Morphological Interference of the Minangkabau Language toward Indonesian found in SMKN 1 Padang by Silfia (2006), the Interference of the First Language on the Second/ Foreign Language Acquisition by Yusmalinda (2006), and Lexical Interference of the Minangkabau Language Toward Indonesian Language as Found in Harian Singgalang Newspaper by Meilinda Ayu (2008).

Bhela (2000) studied about the influence of native language interference in learning the second language as the target language. She observed the features of interference of L1 on L2 and what are the effects on the syntactic structure of a written task of a second language learner. She found that when the participants of her study writing in the target language, the learner rely on their native language structures to produce a response. As the structures of L1 and L2 have differences, there has been a relatively high frequency of errors occurring in the target language, thus indicating an interference of the native of language on the target language as expected. This study shows that interference of the first language on the target language or second language cause error mostly.

Yusmalinda (2006) investigated the occurrence of interference of the first language on the second/ foreign language acquisition. She found that the first language interfere the second language acquisition positively and negatively. She discussed about negative interference because it caused errors. She also implied that the teacher should pay more attention to the students’ errors that caused by the interference of the first language in the second language acquisition in every level of language, so that he/ she can anticipate the errors. The teacher’s effort in reducing the occurrences of interference in language acquisition is really important to avoid the use of language interference.

Silfia (2006) investigated the morphological interference of the Minangkabau language toward Indonesian language found in SMKN 1 Padang. She found that the students have done the deviation in using suffix, prefix, and confix to the main words. She also found that the factors that caused morphological interference among the students are inside (the students’ behavior from their environment) and outside the factors (teacher also use the Minangkabau Language in teaching learning process). This study shows that the Minangkabaunesse children affected by their environment in the process of teaching learning. It is difficult for them not to include their native language when they are talking or writing in the second language.

Finally, Ayu (2008) studied about lexical interference of the Minangkabau language toward Indonesian language as found in Harian Singgalang newspaper. She discussed that lexical interference of the Minangkabau language toward Indonesian mostly exist in the articles and column by the journalist and columnist of Harian Singgalang as the figuration of their ability as the bilingual people. She found some types of and factors of lexical interference that influenced the existence of those deviations, such as replacing, changing, and transferring even deleting the syllable of morpheme, phoneme, and diphthong from the first language into the second language. She also found that the differences in phoneme, diphthong, and the way of pronouncing of those lexical items are significant, but they still have the similarity in meaning.

2.9 Conceptual Framework

The following chart shows the conceptual framework of this research. In this research, the writer analyzes the Minangkabau language. One thing that can be analyzed from the Minangkabau language is the lexical interference of Minangkabaunesse into Indonesian. Lexical interference can be studied through sociolinguistics analysis where the types and the meaning of words that has been interfered can be determined. The result of this study is to know how the novelist uses lexical interference items in that novel. It also shows how lexical interference items carry new meaning of words and changing the information the novelist wants to deliver.

Bilingual Language Use

Minangkabaunesse Indonesian

Lexical Interference items used by Novelist found in novel

Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck


Types Lexical meaning

Research Finding



3.1 Research Design

Base on the limitation and the formulation of the problems of this research, this research will be conducted by using qualitative research. Qualitative research is a research that will analyze the linguistic phenomenon in the novel interrelated to the language use in the society and the culture. Qualitative research is a research doing in order to get descriptive data in form of words or spoken data from the object that is analyzed (Moleong, 2002:2).

The descriptive method in this research is purposed to describe the type and lexical meaning of lexical interference of the Minangkabaunesse into Indonesia found in novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck. Descriptive research involves collecting data in order to answer research questions by explaining and describing the topic of a problem based on the theory used. Sudaryanto (1993:62) says that descriptive research is a research done based on the fact or phenomenon that empirically is in society. Moreover he also proposes three steps in the research namely; collecting the data, analyzing the data, and preventing the result of the analysis. Base on the quotations above, this research will be done in qualitative by using descriptive method.

3.2 Data and Source of Data

The data of this research will be taken from novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck written by Hamka in 1939. The data of this research will be all lexical interference items that will be found in that novel. There are much interference found in this novel such as phonological and syntactical, but the writer focuses this research in the lexical interference. The writer chooses this novel because she considers that the social background of the novelist is Minangkabau culture and it results to the language use inside the novel which is influenced by the Minangkabau language.

3.3 Techniques of Data Collection

According to Alwasilah (2006:151-157), there are five techniques in collecting data in linguistics; survey, experiment, interview, observation, and document analysis. In this study, the data will be collected by doing document analysis. The document that is going to analyze will be novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck written by Hamka in 1939.

The writer will do some steps in collecting the data. First, the writer will read the novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck as source of data. Second, the writer will underline the words or lexical that is interfered from the Minangkabau language into Indonesian. Finally, the writer will list the words and lexical interference and divides them into category based on change in lexical meaning or not.

3.4 Techniques of Data Analysis.

In analyzing the data that will be taken from the novel Tenggelamnya Kapal Van Der Wijck, the writer uses some steps. First, the writer will take all the lexical interference items that will be collected from the novel. Second, the writer will analyze each of the lexical interference items. Third, the writer will classify and group them into its classification that is based on the types of lexical interference and also based on changing in lexical meaning or not. Finally, the writer will find lexical meaning of the lexical interference items of the classification changing on the lexical meaning or not.


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Proposed by

Windra Handayani

64155/ 2005


Dr. Jufrizal, M.Hum.

Drs. Amri Isyam, M.Pd.





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