The Bugis by Christian Pelras

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imageChristian Pelras, the author, has been researching on Bugis tribe for more than four decades. He stayed in South Sulawesi, the home of the Bugis, and researched the Bugis tribe. In four decades he successfully and meticulously compiled the Bugis historical origins, and the culture of old-time Bugis to the modern life of Bugis tribe.

The book was first published by Blackwell Publisher in England. It was a series of the People of South East Asia and the Pacific. Then in 2006 it was published to Indonesia by Nalar. Since it contains precise analysis and fact on Bugis, the book has become a must-have item for those who want to learn about Bugis or simply want to dig information on Bugis.

Bugis tribe comes from South Sulawesi. It has a diverse culture. The culture was formed not just by the Bugis people itself but also formed by the influence of other nation’s culture. The influences of other tribes happen because the relation of Bugis people and other tribe, especially on trading.

The richness of Bugis culture can be seen on their daily life and occasional ritual. Bugis people have their own distinctive language and alphabet letter. Bugis tribe use Bugis language as the tools of their communication, instead of Malay. They use Lontara, their alphabet, to write. Relate to the use of aksara Lontara, the biggest literature work of Bugis tribe is La Galigo. La Galigo is the longest epos in the world. It was written using old Lontara and mainly tells story about the ancestors of Bugis.

There are many sides of Bugis which is written in this book. It is two big parts. The first part is about the establishment of Bugis’s identity, while the second part is the society and the culture. Although it is impossible to write all aspects and details on Bugis people, this book contains almost everything about Bugis.

This book is worth reading, especially for those who learns Bugis culture and origins. Personally, I like this book. As the member of Bugis tribe, I am very curious about my own culture and my ancestors. In this book, Christian Pelras give all the essential and essential information. It is not merely a theory, but it is based on fact and the research that he did.

Christian Pelras is French. It is such a shame that the one who dedicated many years to do a research on Bugis is not a Bugis people itself. There are also many local researchers in South Sulawesi, but they never do as best Christian Pelras. I also think that the young generation should be encouraged to love their own culture. Our culture is so amazing and we should preserve it.

Type of Work: Anthropology Book

Title: Manusia Bugis / The Bugis

Author: Christian Pelras

Place of Publisher: Jakarta

Date of Publication: January 2006