Abu Nawas Sabah Folk Version: Intertextuality and Creativity

(Abu Nawas Versi Rakyat Sabah: Intertekstualiti dan Kreativiti)

Low Kok On

lowkokon@ums.edu.my

Borneo Heritage Research Unit,

Faculty of Humanities, Arts and Heritage,

Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Jalan UMS,

88400 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia.

Tel.: +6088-320000

Abstract

The tales of Abu Nawas, which originated in Arab-Persia are popular humorous stories told in the Malay world. Several written sources reveal that these tales spread to the Malay world between the 13th and 15th centuries, through the books One Thousand and One Nights and Hikayat Abu Nawas. Drawing from field trips conducted in a number of places in Sabah, a total of 13 tales, that had been transmitted orally among Sabah indigenous informants, have been collected. Upon comparison with Hikayat Abu Nawas, it was found that some of the Sabah folk version of Abu Nawas tales are similar to those published in Hikayat Abu Nawas while some are very different. This study attempts to compare the motifs of the original Abu Nawas tales with those of the Sabah folk version based on the principles of intertextuality. The intertextual comparison shows that early on, the indigenous people of Sabah had been exposed to the Abu Nawas stories. Later however, the stories were retold based on local elements. In the end, the indigenous storytellers of Sabah began to create their own version with motifs different from that of the original tales. These retold stories are rich in local color and motifs, highlighting the genius and creativity of local Sabah storytellers.

Keywords: Abu Nawas, humorous tale, intertextuality, motif comparison, local genius, creativity

Abstrak

Cerita Abu Nawas ialah cerita jenaka popular di alam Melayu yang berasal dari Arab-Parsi. Beberapa sumber tulisan melaporkan bahawa cerita ini telah disebarkan ke alam Melayu antara kurun ke-13 hingga kurun ke-15 melalui Hikayat Seribu Satu Malam dan Hikayat Abu Nawas. Dalam kerja lapangan yang dikendalikan di beberapa tempat di Sabah baru-baru ini, sejumlah tiga belas buah cerita Abu Nawas, yang tersebar secara lisan dalam kalangan informan pelbagai etnik peribumi Sabah telah dikumpul. Setelah diteliti, sesetengah daripada cerita Abu Nawas versi rakyat Sabah didapati mirip dengan cerita Abu Nawas yang diterbitkan dalam Hikayat Abu Nawas manakala sesetengah yang lain didapati jauh berbeza. Tulisan ini bertujuan membuat perbandingan antara motif cerita Abu Nawas versi rakyat Sabah dengan motif cerita Abu Nawas dalam Hikayat Abu Nawas berasaskan prinsip intertekstualiti. Hasil perbandingan intertekstual yang dilakukan mendapati bahawa, pada mulanya penduduk peribumi Sabah telah didedahkan dengan cerita Abu Nawas. Terdapat sesetengah cerita Abu Nawas kemudiannya telah diolah semula berasaskan unsur tempatan. Akhir sekali, pencerita peribumi Sabah telah mencipta sejumlah cerita Abu Nawas, yang motifnya berbeza sama sekali daripada motif cerita Abu Nawas asal. Cerita Abu Nawas versi rakyat Sabah seperti ini didapati kaya dengan motif dan unsur tempatan. Penghasilan  cerita Abu Nawas versi rakyat Sabah turut menonjolkan kearifan dan kreativiti yang ada pada pencerita tempatan Sabah.

Kata  kunci: Abu Nawas, cerita jenaka, intertekstualitii, perbandingan motif, kearifan tempatan, kreativiti

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