Good day all,

Currently I have an assignment on my sociolinguistics class. I have to make a research paper on the difference word choice preference between Malaysian English and Indonesian English.

However, it is quite hard for me to find any related research even in other languages for my literature review part. Can someone name the term for me?

The case is like this, Malaysian tend to use the word “spectacle” while Indonesian use “glasses” while there are referring to the same thing.

It is also will be helpful if you can help me name a term for the same word in the same language but have different meaning. Like drug that can be medicine in uk but narcotics in us (if i am not mistaken)

Thank you


2 Answers 2


The word you are looking for is etymology which is the study of the history of words.

I suspect you might find some echos of the British Empire or other colonialism here. Malaysia and Singapore were part of the British empire once, although spectacle apparently comes from old French.


semantics TFD[

in general, the study of the relationship between words and meanings.

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