Ever tried explaining what ‘perasan’ means, in actual terms, to a non-Malaysian?

I did.


And failed.





Ah well, and I actually went to look it up online,  just so my life would be easier..

And so I could put off doing some studying 





Turns out fellow Malaysians scattered scross the globe face the same problem too XP



The closest, and simplest, basic answer I found was…

“Full of yourself”


Which comes close, just not enough. =/


Anyways, according to


Colloquial version of the English language as spoken in Malaysia and it is a portmanteau of the word Malay and English. The language shares substantial linguistic similarities with Singlish in Singapore. In real essence, Manglish and Singlish are one and the same although there are a few slang words that exist in one and not in another. For all practical purposes, Manglish and Singlish are subsets of the same group. 

Theoretically, English as spoken in Malaysia is based on British English and called Malaysian English. British spelling is generally followed. However, the influence of American English modes of expression and slang is strong, particularly among Malaysian youth. 

Since 1968, Malay, or Bahasa Melayu, has been the country’s sole official language. While English is widely used, many Malay words have become part of common usage in informal English or Manglish (also means Mangled English). An example is suffixing sentences with lah, e.g. “Don’t be so worried-lah”, which is usually used to present a sentence as rather light-going and not so serious, the suffix has no specific meaning. Although Chinese dialects also make abundant use of the suffix lah and there is some disagreement as to which language it was originally borrowed from. There is also a strong influence from Mandarin, Cantonese, Hokkien, and Tamil, which are other major dialects and languages spoken in Malaysia. Manglish also uses some anachronistic British terms from the era of British colonization (see “gostan” and “outstation” below). 

Read the rest of the article here:


Also, check this blogger, who has done a commendable job of starting the cataloging of Manglish words into a dictionary (I highly recommend this blogger):


One Response to “Manglish”

  1. […] . The question, then, resolves to one of whether mispronunciation leads to permanent language Manglish – 03/02/2009 Ever tried explaining what ‘perasan’ means, in actual […]

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