Chapado and the Survey
Here’s Part II of Professor Armando da Silva discussing (in the patua) the different aspects of Macanese, the language of Macau. A text summary in English of his remarks follows the video.
Also, please take our 10 question survey (Open until Oct. 15, 2013) . It will help us estimate the size and location of Macanese communities around the world. Here’s the link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/R8YSLLY .
Macanese prisoners held by the Japanese during World War II used the patua to communicate with each other. The language was unintelligible to their captors. Historian Charles R. Boxer (C.R. Boxer) was one of the first to document the language and the history of “Nosa Gente” (our people) in his book: Fidalgos in the Far East, written during the war.
Boxer and others also documented aspects of traditional Macanese culture, including culinary dishes, such as “Balichung”, a dish made with pork and tamarind, which the British in Hong Kong referred to as the “green horror”.
Da Silva notes that Macanese prisoners of war were very familiar with “Balichung”, calling it one of many “comidas de casa”. Other dishes included “Minchi” and “Arroz Pulu Carigado”. Most were eaten at home, but sometimes were taken on family picnics.
Da Silva states that there are also “intangible” traits of the patua. It is not only the language of Macau, but the language of the people, allowing them to express their own family histories as stories (similar to folklore).
Macanese is an old mix of Portuguese, Chinese, and many other languages, including English. The “dialects” in Macau and Hong Kong are essentially the same language.