Di Jamiekan NyuuTestimentContextConcernsConnection
CONTEXTActs 2, 6&11: Now the multitude was confoundedbecause that every man heard them speak in his ownlanguage…the wonderful works of God.Aks 2, 6&11: Dem did well shak kaaz evri wan a demdid ier iina fi dem ouna langwij wa di biliiva dem did ase… bout di powaful sitn dem we Gad du.Scripture is best received in our ownlanguage
CONCERNS1-5• 1. Jamaican Patois is bad English – not aseparate Language.• 2. There are many variations of Patois.• 3. Patois is only for oral communication - itcannot or should not be written.• 4. Patois is impossible or too difficult to read.• 5. Patois is only for light talk and comedy – itcannot convey serious or complex thoughts.
CONCERNS6-10• 6. Use of Patois corrupts the Learning andSpeaking of Proper English.• 7. Patois demeans the Sanctity of Scripture.• 8. Uneducated Jamaicans will not be able toread or understand the Patois Bible.• 9. Resources spent on the Patois Bible couldhave been better spent.• 10. The Patois Bible translation is notaccurate.
1. Patois is not a Separate Language• All languages are defined by 3 elements:• 1. Vocabulary (Lexicon)• 2. Structure (Syntax, Grammar)• 3. Pronunciation (Intonations, Drawl, Lilt)
A Separate Language?• Vocabulary• 1. Patois contains about 400 words of directWest African usage (Twi etc.) - eg.ackee, nyam, unu, pikni, patoo, senseh, chakachaka, bakra, dodo, dukunu, cata, bissy, duppy, eh eh, etc.• 2. Patois may use English words but withdifferent meanings (eg.favour, stay, catch, food, ground)• 3. The Patois Vocabulary is 20-40% African, and60-80% English.
A Separate Language?• Structure• 1. Patois Grammar is totally different from EnglishGrammar –(verbs, pronouns, plurals, questions, adjectives, noadverbs etc).• 2. Structure more than anything else defines alanguage.• 3. Jamaican Patois is almost 100% African in structureand bears striking similarities to HaitianCreole, Surinamese Patois and many other African-derived creoles.• 4. Yu did nuo se, Is chuu no?, Mi a go kom, Is no so itgo, Gi mi no man, Mi neva si nobadi, are similar to Twiin structure and very dissimilar to English.
A Separate Language?• Pronunciation• 1. Patois contains many sounds not common toEnglish (eg. ky as in kyar, ny as in nyuu, hn as ingwaahn, uo as in nuo, chr as in chravl).• 2. Patois emphasises words byintonations, repetition or drawl (eg. it sweetsweet, it sweeeeeet, it sweet kyaahn dun).English is mainly monotonic and uses adverbs.• 3. Patois sounds much more like the WestAfrican languages than English (90% African).
Patois a Separate Language ?• By the above criteria, Patois in itspurest form is a SeparateLanguage.• 20-40% in Vocabulary• 100% in Structure• 90% in Pronunciation
2. Many Variations in Patois• 1. Most languages have variations anddialects – English much more than Patois.• 2. English originally was a patois of Latin andother romance languages.• 3. A language tends to become standardizedwhen it is written (especially for the Bible – egEnglish, Afrikaan, Twi).• 4. The standard writing form is usually asused by the majority of speakers.
3. Patois Not A Written Language• 1. No language starts as a written language.• 2. The writing follows the language – thelanguage does not follow the writing.• 3. All languages can be written. Patois is nodifferent.• 4. Languages are best written in their phoneticform – i.e. no silent letters, no variations in letterusage, consistent vowel sounds etc.• 5. The Wycliffe Bible Translators have writtenthe Bible phonetically for over 700 languagesworldwide.
4. Patois Is Impossible Or Too DifficultTo Read• 1. English speakers do not learn to readphonetically because it is not a phoneticallywritten language (a curse for non-Englishspeakers).• 2. Written Patois is entirely phonetic withconsistent vowel and consonant sounds.• 3. Patois is a tonal language, similar to Twi. i.e.The natural rhythm ismusical, expressive, emotive. (known as the liltof the language).• 4. Patois should not be read in a monotone.
5. Patois is Only For Comedy – NotSerious Or Complex Communication• 1. Miss Lou is not to be misunderstood. Sheused comedy to convey very serious thoughtsand commentary and to bring patois into themainstream of understanding and respect.• 2. Patois and the African languages thrive oneveryday images and convey vividexpressions.(eg.“No wan little twang”, “Yu favaheng pon nail”, “Rain a fall but dutty tough”, “Mihed jus a spin”.• 3. No language is complete in itself. Sometimesit borrows from other languages (eg. laissezfaire, espirit de corp, rambo, cafeteria, poco pocoetc.).
6. Use of Patois Corrupts the Learningand Speaking of English• 1. Only about 30% of CXC students in Jamaicanhigh schools pass English every year.• 2. We think the majority of patois speakersunderstand English, but they do so only at themost basic levels. It is not their Heart Language.• 3. From early life, patois speakers are told theirlanguage is bad English and they try to improvetheir language by becoming speaky spokey.• 4. English in Jamaica needs to be understood andtaught as a separate language.• 5. Separate languages learnt early facilitate thelearning of others. (eg. Twi and English in Ghana)
• 1. We think it is too frivolous (eg. Piita gooutsaid an im baal, an im baal, an im baal so til).• 2. The language is too coarse (eg. fasi-fasi skin).• 3. It is too uneducated and difficult tounderstand. (“mikies kom”).• 4. It is not poetic, like KJV (eg. Psalm 23).• These criticisms are demeaning to the majorityof Jamaicans whose heart language is patois.Why do we revert to patois when we are withour friends, are celebrating or mourning, or justbeing ourselves without any airs?7. Patois Demeans the Sanctity ofScripture
8. Uneducated Jamaicans Wont BeAble To Read The Bible• 1. True, but so was New Testament writingswhen first written - also the English Bible whenfirst written.• 2. Scripture was first written to be READ by theFEW, and to be HEARD by the MANY.• 3. Hearing is the first step in learning andunderstanding any language.• 3. Everyone has to learn to read a language.Patois is no different. Patois speakers should betaught like everyone else.• 4. I learnt to read patois in one day. Just get thevowels right and the rest is easy.
9. Resources Used in Writing ThePatois Bible Could Have Been BetterSpent• 1. Every first translation is a tedious andexpensive undertaking.• 2. The patois Bible was no more expensivethan others.• 3. Translating the Bible into a Mother Tongue(Heart Language) has always been a catalystand aid to mission and evangelisation.• 4. The Wycliffe Bible Translators have beendoing this worldwide for nearly 80 years.
10. The Patois Bible Translation Is NotAccurate• 1. The translation has been done directly fromthe Greek by Greek Scholars who are fluent inJamaican patois, and not from English or anyother language.• 2. The Patois Bible is therefore not a version ofany English Translation.• 3. The translation has been tested by a largeteam of Theologians, Linguists and Students.• 4. It has been accepted nationally andinternationally by many denominations andchurches – mainline, evangelical, pentecostal.
CONNECTION• 1. Only the New Testament has been completedto date.• 2. The patois translators are now beginning totranslate the Psalms.• 3. The NT is available in CD for hearing and inPrint for reading.• 4. It is now being read and listened to in severalchurches. (patois prayers and preaching too).• 5. I use it in my personal devotions and studyalong with my English and Spanish Bibles.• 6. WHAT A BLESSING!
MI DON AN TENK YU• Tenk yu wan an aal. Mi uop se unu wi chrai fi get akapi a di Nyuu Testiment an riid it fi yuself. Chrusmi, it no aad.• Yu wi luv it an it wi bring yu nuf blesn. An a begyu, no kos it til yu chrai it. Memba se di Laad wok insom chrienj wies we wi no andastan. Mi shuor se yuwi kum ova.• An wan muor taim, TENK YU, TENK YU, TENK YU!Barry A. Wade, Fellow,Caribbean Graduate School of Theology
CONNECTION• Selective Readings in Narrative, Theology andPersonal Greetings from Di Nyuu Testiment:• Narrative: Aks 9, 1-17. Saal get siev.• Theology: Ruoman 5, 1-11. Gad put tingz raitbitwiin wi an im.• Personal: 2 Timoti 4, 9-22: Paal aks Timoti fi dusom sitn fi im.
Di Jamiekan LangwijFi Chransliet1-10• 1. Wat a wie yu fava yu pupa.• 2. Is ou yu stie so?• 3. Du, mikies kom.• 4. Taata gaan a grung.• 5. Beg yu chruo som fuud iina mi suup.• 6. Im galang galang til im kech im yaad.• 7. Se fe.• 8. Wat a preke.• 9. Mi putus swiit kyaahn don.• 10. Wat a fululups.
Fi Chransliet11-20• 11. Im is a riil duodo.• 12. Shi a did wan mouta masi.• 13. A wan bunununus gal dat.• 14. No put no guzu pan mi.• 15. Cho man. Wa mek yu nyam di fufu laik yu a bafan.• 16. Di bwai did av som fasi fasi kin.• 17. Is a duppy ous dat.• 18. No sen mi no bugu-yaga bwai fi di wok.• 19. Im ed stie laik sen-se foul.• 20. Mi no waan no dedi dedi pikni iina mi klaas.
Fi Chransliet21-30• 21. Eh eh! Im likl but im talawa.• 22. A mi kombolo dat.• 23. Whoi! Shi a wan tegereg.• 24. Mi naa go iina a nuo kas kas wid yu.• 25. A wan bakra bwai dat.• 26. No bada su-su mi.• 27. Nuf nuf janga de a riba batam.• 28. Di miitn did chaka chaka.• 29. Di tuu a dem a te-te.• 30. Mi sarry ier. Mi kyaahn memba no muor.