Gadis Kartika Pratiwi: an FCS Alumnus, to be Presenter in Indonesian Students Discussion Forum 2018 Australia
Not many are interested in deaf people as research subjects, but few studies have raised this topic. One of those interested in raising this topic is Gadis Kartika Pratiwi, an alumnus of English Language Education Program (ELEP) Faculty of Cultural Science (FCS) Universitas Brawijaya (UB) batch 2012. “Actually it was the assignment of Language and Intercultural Communication class, which was a research project. When I submitted to ISDF, it was accepted,” she said.
ISDF (Indonesian Students Discussion Forum) is a forum formed by students studying in Australia from different backgrounds and organizations. They are scholarship awardees from Australia Awards Scholars Club (AASC), PPIA – University of Melbourne and Lembaga Dana Dana Pendidikan (LPDP) in Victoria, Australia. This forum originated from the concerns about the problems faced by Indonesia due to various problems ranging from multicultural to economic issues. This was held on 27 March 2018 in University of Melbourne, Australia.
The theme of ISDF is Inventing Indonesia’s Future Development and the goal of ISDF is to present the best ideas, research, and inventions in all areas of study for Indonesia’s future development. “The title of my research is ‘Intracultural Communication between Deaf and Hearing People in Indonesia and the Cultural Conceptualization of Deaf’,” Gadis says. The lady who is pursuing a Master of Applied Linguistics at Monash University, Australia, expresses her interest in disability. “Since there are not much journals on Deaf study in Indonesia. I am also interested in sign language. There are so many features that can be researched,” the best graduate of UB undergraduate program explained. Her research discusses the relationship between Deaf and hearing people in Indonesia, either it is intercultural or intracultural communication, is problematic. It constitutes a problem because it can be an intercultural communication since Deaf and hearing people acquire different first language. Gadis’ research discusses intercultural and intracultural communication between those two communities and examine the cultural conceptualization of the word “Deaf.”
In conducting this research, Gadis had many obstacles. “The challenges were many. It was my first semester that I had to adapt many things, one of which was the lecture system, the task, and others,” she said. In addition, constraints also came from the respondents. “When I was conducting this research, it was difficult to find respondents of deaf people in Indonesia who are willing to fill out my questionnaires,” she added.
In this study, Gadis explained about the communication relationship between Deaf and hearing in Indonesia. “This can be incorporated into intracultural communication, not intercultural, because although they shared the same culture and come from the same country, the first language is not necessarily the same,” she said. Those who are Deaf from birth, their first language is sign language. Bahasa Indonesia became their second language. “Then also about them prefer to be called Deaf not deaf, because deaf reflects their identity and culture,” she continued. In this study Gadis also found that some people deaf do not even look at them as disabled. “This is in line with Harris’s theory that there are two dichotomies, namely HCD or Hearing Construction of Deafness, and DCD or Deaf Construction of Deafness. If people say deaf people are not normal, it is not ‘whole’, while according to Deaf people, they are fine. They have their own culture and language. They do not need cochlear implant,” this native Malang, Indonesia, continued.
Gadis Kartika Pratiwi earned her Bachelor of Education with cum laude honors from English Language Education Program, Universitas Brawijaya, in 2016. This LPDP awardee also had worked as research assistant in FCS UB where she involved as Sign language interpreter for Deaf students Center for Studies Disability Service (PSLD) UB. Apart of her educational and professional activities, she also actively involved in numerous organizations and events, among others, acting as education staff in FORMAPI (Forum Mahasiswa Peduli Inklusi), UB. Gadis’ presentation at ISDF can be accessed through www.isdf.co/video.