A substantive barrier identified to the delivery of formal health services in PNG is that these services are largely conducted in English or Tok Pisin
(the lingua franca of PNG).
He gestures towards a person or people out of shot, shouting, "You are a dead man", and, "I will kill you", in Tok Pisin
The characters are engaging and the local dialect, Tok Pisin
, scattered through the book is supported by a glossary.
I happily strung scraps of French, Dutch, Malay, Chinese and sorta-English together with a thread of Melanesian pidgin, now formalized and known as "Tok Pisin
." I loved it.
The universal language is Tok Pisin
. Most of the people I had contact with spoke English, and each village also has its own local language.
Such stories are not uncommon in PNG, a largely traditional society with 836 languages and where belief in witchcraft or sanguma as it is known in Tok Pisin
, the lingua franca, continues to undermine health care in the country.
In all these years none of these people articulated him/herself by characterising their situation as their 'modernity' although both they and I used all the lingual registers that Lattas and Jacka listed above, as well as a whole range of derogatory and exhortatory characterisations from both Tok Pisin
and Tok Pies (specifically Yagwoia), including 'kanaka' (bush yokel, primitive) and 'wailman' (wild man, savage).
Children and some adults were also fluent in Tok Pisin
, and only one person was fluent in English--two languages that became much more prevalent over the ten-year period in which two more fieldtrips were conducted, the most recent in 1992.
I 'specially loved mixing dialectical debris from three languages into one unstructured sentence, stringin' 'em together with Melanesian pidgin, which is sorta the Swahili of the islands, and now called "Tok Pisin
" Mipela likee distok velly-velly.
This has now developed into Tok Pisin
('Talk Pidgin'), an official language with its own dictionaries and grammars.