The "Bule" Discussion

Status
Not open for further replies.

snpark

Well-Known Member
Cager
Joined
Sep 30, 2016
Messages
2,992
Moderation note:

The posts in this thread have been moved to its own thread here because they were off-topic to the original thread. You can find that thread here: link

End moderation note


He's not white.

I'm not in the mood to tell the whole story, but he stiffed me. The money was finally transferred today. The amount, well let's just say suing him is no longer on the table. I don't think he understands what a father is willing to do to feed his family.

Who mentioned colour?
Wow.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

gemima

Well-Known Member
Cager
Joined
Jul 25, 2016
Messages
460
Yes
"Foreigner"
"Expat"
I was unaware it suddenly meant "white man"

Since when?
Doesn't the word mean albino or something linked with whiteness?

To me, bule is just any foreigner - regardless of skin color but I am not a native speaker.
 

fastpitch17

Well-Known Member
Charter Member
Cager
Joined
Jul 19, 2016
Messages
3,528
Bule at one time meant white people in the negative basically because their colonizers were white. Over the years it lost most of it's negativity and pretty much just means foreigner.
 

R Cameron

Well-Known Member
Charter Member
Cager
Joined
Jul 19, 2016
Messages
1,112
Yes
"Foreigner"
"Expat"
I was unaware it suddenly meant "white man"

Since when?

Etymology​

The word was in use in the 19th century and probably earlier, meaning 'white', when referring to buffalo. An 1840 book noted that people preferred 'bulei' (white) buffalo to 'hitam' (which is the current Indonesian word for black).[1]

An 1869 Malay-Dutch dictionary notes the words 'balar', 'sabun'[2] and 'andan' as referring to 'white people' (wit mensch) and 'albinos'. An 1894 Malay-English dictionary noted the words 'andan' and 'bulei' as referring to albinos, and 'sabun' (a word in current usage as soap) as an adjective for all-white dogs, and for albinos. The word 'balar' is given as an adjective meaning white in the context of buffalos, and also albinos.[3]

A 1948 Javanese Indonesian dictionary notes boelé, balar and boelai as a suffix to the Javanese 'wong' or 'person', in Indonesian 'orang balar' or 'orang saboen'.[4]

Subsequent dictionaries may define 'bule' simply as albino. However, in current usage the English loanword, albino is more commonly used.

bule/bu·le/ /bulé/ cak 1 a bulai; 2 n orang (binatang dan sebagainya) berkulit putih; 3 orang kulit putih (terutama orang Eropa dan Amerika); orang Barat
 

snpark

Well-Known Member
Cager
Joined
Sep 30, 2016
Messages
2,992
Don't sit there pretending "bule" doesn't traditionally mean a white person, and you said it. Twice.
Don't tell me what I meant or didn't mean.
As far as I know bule means foreigner. Like farang. Or expat. You are the one who explicitly mentioned skin colour.
 

Dharma Police

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
300
Don't tell me what I meant or didn't mean.
As far as I know bule means foreigner. Like farang. Or expat. You are the one who explicitly mentioned skin colour.
Go ahead and call a black Nigerian guy a bule here, see how that works out for ya 🤣
 

atlantis

Administrator
Moderator
Cager
Joined
Jul 13, 2016
Messages
2,942
Go ahead and call a black Nigerian guy a bule here, see how that works out for ya 🤣
Perhaps you should read more often the news in bahasa Indonesia:








There are tons of example written and spoken in the medias. Just watch TV, read papers. Bule is not anymore a white monopoly. No-one would deny that by using the word bule, people would automatically think "white", but the problem here is that it is changing and many examples show it isn't anymore that simple.

It is nowadays common in modern bahasa indonesia to refer ANY foreigner as "bule", adding Nigeria/Jepang/India...etc if they are not kulit putih, rambut pirang, hidung mancung.

Though it is more true in any area with a lot of influx of foreigners of any breed (ex: Bali or even my region) it is true all over the archipelago from Sabang to Merauke. There are now bule Eropa, bule India, bule Jepang, bule singapura. bule afrika..dll as you can see in the above links I pasted. It's a trend in the language which appeared in the past few years but it can't be ignored.
 

Dharma Police

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
300
Perhaps you should read more often the news in bahasa Indonesia:







There are tons of example written and spoken in the medias. Just watch TV, read papers. Bule is not anymore a white monopoly. No-one would deny that by using the word bule, people would automatically think "white", but the problem here is that it is changing and many examples show it isn't anymore that simple.

It is nowadays common in modern bahasa indonesia to refer ANY foreigner as "bule", adding Nigeria/Jepang/India...etc if they are not kulit putih, rambut pirang, hidung mancung.

Though it is more true in any area with a lot of influx of foreigners of any breed (ex: Bali or even my region) it is true all over the archipelago from Sabang to Merauke. There are now bule Eropa, bule India, bule Jepang, bule singapura. bule afrika..dll as you can see in the above links I pasted. It's a trend in the language which appeared in the past few years but it can't be ignored.
I don’t care what a bunch of journalists type out trying to deflate a once derogatory term reserved for white people in Indonesia.

You see a non-white foreigner on the streets and say they’re “bule” in mixed company they still look for the white person.

Go ahead and try it in real life and get your nose out of media op-ed pieces written by local social justice warriors.
 

Dharma Police

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
300
Btw, at this very moment I’m hanging out with three Indonesians and asked them. Without a second thought they said the term bule is still associated with white people.

“Expat” is the umbrella term for foreigners of all backgrounds. The confirmation bias in this community sometimes makes my stomach churn.
 

atlantis

Administrator
Moderator
Cager
Joined
Jul 13, 2016
Messages
2,942
Btw, at this very moment I’m hanging out with three Indonesians and asked them. Without a second thought they said the term bule is still associated with white people.
This is hilarious. If it's the only justification you've found to avoid admitting your wrong understanding of the word as it is used by many nowadays in common language, you fall flat on your nose. But I think you understood it.
I have lived everyday with Indonesian of any creed for the past 20+ years and heard them so many times using the word bule to qualify any non Indonesian, be they white, brown or black that I am doubting that your three indonesian friend would have never heard it. Bule nigeria, bule jepang...etc have definitely become part of the common language, particularly in the past few years with sosmed becoming so prominent.
The point is not to deny that when using the word bule, Indonesian would predominentely think of "a foreigner with white skin". The point is to deny the fact that it is used EXCLUSIVELY to label white skin people.
Heck, a week ago or so a cop was talking to me and telling me, apologizing for the blatant racism of the word he was about to say, that he didn't like much the bule afrika because they were in his own word always source of troubles. Perhaps he was another "social justice warrior"?
You don't hear it from journalists only and you must be deaf or mingling only with either bule or with only very educated Indonesian who, out of respect and politeness, would generally avoid to use the term "bule" at all, but by a large portion of the population, particularly in the younger generation. You may want to deny it, but this is out of ignorance.
Also to be honest your bit about "a bunch of journalists (...) trying to deflate a once derogatory term" gave me the giggles. If for you any of the articles in the above links are Journalism written by Jpournalists with an agenda, for me they are definitely not. They are just articles written in a way common people could understand and it is precisely why the term bule is used. You wouldn't find "bule nigeria" or "bule afrika" or even bule only in a properly written journalist article. There is no agenda of trying to deflate whatever there. It's just articles written in a way most Indonesian would understand, particularly the less educated.
The articles I pasted are from detik, merdeka, tribunnews...etc and from different region. They have been fully understood by probably all Indonesian who have read them and didn't generate reactions of horror and shock at the word "bule" being used for non caucasian. None have asked to the authors "what the fuck are you talking about when saying "bule nigeria" or "bule Afrika"?. They understood what was the meaning because either they may used or have heard and understand these words themselves without being overly surprised by them. Believe me every Indonesian who have read the articles understood without a doubt there wasn't a reference to a white guy there but to blacks, asians or arabs. If it wouldn't be understandable I don't think the media would have used it in its headline which are normally catch up sentences written to trigger the interest of a reader.
 

Hawk256

Well-Known Member
Cager
Joined
May 9, 2020
Messages
286
I had to get in on the fun and ask some Indonesians myself. The consensus is that while bule can mean any foreigner as in bule nigeria they commonly don't use bule in front of nigeria. Same for Chinese, Japanese and other counties. They would say nigera, jepang or cina without bule. It appears as if bule is implied. If they hear bule alone they think you are referring to white foreigner. None of them have a negative connation to the term bule. Take it for what's it's worth but this seems to follow my personal observations as well.
 

centurion

Well-Known Member
Cager
Joined
Aug 20, 2016
Messages
912
Says "bule" slang term for Caucasian people.

Other bules have to have adjective: bule Afrika, bule Maroko etc.

Many times, foreigners have a better understanding and perspective than Indonesians, so they can teach them better their own language and many other things. I often notice such behavior.

Expat=foreigner of Western origin; all others are immigrants. I think all in this forum think about themselves as "expats".
 

Banana72

Well-Known Member
Charter Member
Cager
Joined
Jul 17, 2016
Messages
808
Personally to me...'bule' is a slang for caucasians/'white'person as the original meaning of the word itself is (pardon moi...) 'lack of color'. Most Indonesians I know don't use 'bule' anymore...rather they use 'orbul' (as in 'orang bule') which i never heard of until i came to Indonesia 10 years ago...so must've been a newer term used by some people nowadays. So...in my observation...bule has been replaced by orbul, in my personal experience at least.

As for other expats.. instead of saying 'expats'.Indonesians (that I know of) just refer to the people (or at least guess..) by their country of origin...'orang jepang...orang korea....orang Arab, etc..' only people of higher education or familiar with foreigners, would use the term expats and even then the percentage is pretty small. I've heard some people say 'orang luar'...or even 'WNA'.

To me personally referring to a 'non-caucasian' as 'bule' is strange.

FWIW...nothing bad/good. Just another opinion.
 

Dharma Police

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
300
Btw, at this very moment I’m hanging out with three Indonesians and asked them. Without a second thought they said the term bule is still associated with white people.

“Expat” is the umbrella term for foreigners of all backgrounds. The confirmation bias in this community sometimes makes my stomach churnjk
This is hilarious. If it's the only justification you've found to avoid admitting your wrong understanding of the word as it is used by many nowadays in common language, you fall flat on your nose. But I think you understood it.
I have lived everyday with Indonesian of any creed for the past 20+ years and heard them so many times using the word bule to qualify any non Indonesian, be they white, brown or black that I am doubting that your three indonesian friend would have never heard it. Bule nigeria, bule jepang...etc have definitely become part of the common language, particularly in the past few years with sosmed becoming so prominent.
The point is not to deny that when using the word bule, Indonesian would predominentely think of "a foreigner with white skin". The point is to deny the fact that it is used EXCLUSIVELY to label white skin people.
Heck, a week ago or so a cop was talking to me and telling me, apologizing for the blatant racism of the word he was about to say, that he didn't like much the bule afrika because they were in his own word always source of troubles. Perhaps he was another "social justice warrior"?
You don't hear it from journalists only and you must be deaf or mingling only with either bule or with only very educated Indonesian who, out of respect and politeness, would generally avoid to use the term "bule" at all, but by a very large portion of the population, particularly in the younger generation. You may want to deny it, but this is out of ignorance.
Also to be honest your bit about "a bunch of journalists (...) trying to deflate a once derogatory term" gave me the giggles. If for you any of the articles in the above links are Journalism written by Jpournalists with an agenda, for me they are definitely not. They are just articles written in a way common people could understand and it is precisely why the term bule is used. You wouldn't find "bule nigeria" or "bule afrika" or even bule only in a properly written journalist article. There is no agenda of trying to deflate whatever there. It's just articles written in a way most Indonesian would understand, particularly the less educated.
The articles I pasted are from detik, merdeka, tribunnews...etc and from different region. They have been fully understood by all Indonesian who have read them and didn't generation reactions of horror and shock at the word "bule" being used for non caucasian. None have asked to the authors "what the fuck are you talking about when saying "bule nigeria" or "bule Afrika"?. They understood what was the meaning because either they may used or have heard and understand these words themselves without being overly surprised by them. Believe me every Indonesian who have read the articles understood without a doubt there wasn't a reference to a white guy there but to blacks, asians or arabs. If it wouldn't be understandable I don't think the media would have used it in its headline which are normally catch up sentences written to trigger the interest of a reader.
You suck as an admin.

Stfu, seriously. I don’t care if you have the power to kick me out. When COVID and other restrictions allow us to have reasonable discussions I’ll be back.

As of now, you, as as as admin are taking sides.
You’re a bule. Deal with it. The rest of us will
contend with being Expats. Corny ass mf 🤣
 

Dharma Police

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2021
Messages
300
By being on this forum Mr Dharma Police qualifies as BULE INDONESIA
Yet here I am. Economically providing whole Indonesian towns and its people opportunities to send their kids to college, and advancement in society?

What do you do for them? If you think I'm full of shyt, PM me. But I know that you won't. POS.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Users who viewed this discussion (Total:0)

Follow Us

Latest Expat Indo Articles

Latest Tweets by Expat Indo

Online Now

No members online now.

Newest Members

Forum Statistics

Threads
5,364
Messages
83,961
Members
2,599
Latest member
ambargalih
Top Bottom