Assalamualaikum. Peace to be upon you. Currently I am doing dissertation on nursery rhymes and this entry will explain why on earth I take this matter seriously. Being in Malaysia, you cannot resist the heatwave of the media. I watch kids’ show on TV9 (tagline: dekat di hati), on one fateful day. The famous shows that I watched: Dora the Explorer and Blue’s clues. However, in Malaysian, they were dubbed to Malay language. I am a person who is concern about language and kids’ language development.Also, my beloved mother tongue, Bahasa Melayu Malaysia (different from bahasa Melayu Indonesia). Right, you can consider this as an open letter to TV9 as well. No problem at all. Oh, call me monyet or pondan whatsoever. My job here is to give a lesson.
I am not sure on what purpose they dubbed the shows. I do support the ideas of ‘mother tongue as the foundation of education’ and ‘cintailah bahasa kita’. It’s not that I go against the idea of dubbing it to Bahasa Melayu Malaysia. Imagine if you heard this:
Dora: Mari kita tolong Pigmy Marmoset mengutip sap pokok!
I was quite blur when they mention “sap pokok”. I thought hard. I thought it was Malay word but it was not. From Cambridge Dictionary, the definition for sape is: the liquid that carries food to all parts of a plant. Simply in Malay language, “sap pokok” is “getah pokok”.The translation given by TV9 actually makes young viewers more confuse actually. Even as an adult I was very confuse really. Plus, quite a weird thing when they didn’t change some spanish words.
Nevermind. It’s not much an issue. Just a word anyway. Then I watched Blue’s clues. Steve was hunting treasure using Blue’s clues. Nice at first. Then Blue gave Steve a picture.
Steve: Tengok ini kawan-kawan. Gambar Little Miss Muffet. Apa kita nak buat dengan Little Miss Muffet?
LMM: Tolong saya selesaikan teka-teki ini. Little Miss Muffet, duduk atas bukit, makan dadihnya. Kemudian datang…
(Picture of 3 animals, obviously I can’t remember the other 2 as I love the spider :P)
Again, my brain was puzzled. It doesn’t rhyme at all. Are they trying to tell young Malaysians to translate English traditional nursery rhymes as well? I’m so sorry. This is not right. We should learn it as it is. According to its context. Please do not translate a nursery rhymes for Malaysian children’s sake!
Then Steve found another clue.
Steve: Tengok ni. Ini Jack. Masih ingat Jack? Mari kita tolong Jack.
(Jack was wearing his pyjamas and hat)
Me: Who’s jack? Is there any character in Blue’s clues named Jack?
Steve: Adik-adik tahu apa yang Jack perlu lakukan?
(There was a picture of 3 objects)
Then I remembered. It’s the character in Mother Goose nursery rhymes!
Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack jump over the candle stick.
Oh, my, god. I couldn’t imagine how Malaysian children perceive it. The reason we learn nursery rhymes, without alteration is because of history, culture and language pattern. Those who are not exposed to nursery rhymes during childhood basically have weak foundation in reading. OK! no time for explanation for this time being. Will just post my dissertation copy once I’m finish with it.
Anyhow, I am looking for a way to complaint to TV9. Anyone has any contact? Do leave it in my comment box. Bahasa jiwa bangsa.