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Indonesia (Bahasa Indon. Republik Indonesia)locked

  • Philip Yampolsky,
  • Dr Sumarsam,
  • Lisa Gold,
  • Tilman Seebass,
  • Benjamin Brinner,
  • Michael Crawford,
  • Simon Cook,
  • Matthew Isaac Cohen,
  • Marc Perlman,
  • Virginia Gorlinski,
  • Margaret J. Kartomi,
  • Christopher Basile,
  • R. Anderson Sutton
  •  and Franki Raden

Extract

Country in South-east Asia.

Philip Yampolsky

Currently the fourth most populous nation in the world, Indonesia covers a vast archipelago of some 17,500 islands, of which about 6000 are inhabited (fig.1 ). Its people belong to approximately 300 ethnic groups and speak roughly the same number of languages. The Melayu (Malay) language, originally spoken by ethnic Melayu of the Malay peninsula, eastern Sumatra, and the Riau islands, developed into a trading, administrative and literary lingua franca in many parts of the archipelago; under the name Bahasa Indonesia it has been successfully established as the national language of independent Indonesia. Some 85–90% of the country’s inhabitants profess the Muslim faith, making Indonesia the world’s largest Muslim nation. Irian Jaya, the easternmost province of Indonesia, comprises the western half of the island of New Guinea; its population and cultures are Melanesian rather than Indonesian and it is therefore treated more fully elsewhere (...

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