Kentungan, Traditional Communication Tools and Their Transformation

in #writing8 months ago


Hello lovely friends!
Communication technology is very modern. This is all thanks to the human ability to develop means of long distance communication. In fact, the beginning of the development of communication has passed a long time and gradually. This can be seen from the various existing traditional communication tools.
In the past, to call people or tell important things using a tool called kentungan or kentongan.
Kentungan is a traditional communication tool made of bamboo sticks or teak sticks that are chiseled so that they have a hole that will cause a loud sound when hit.
Contention sizes vary widely. The bamboo that is perforated is of course selected the bamboo that has sufficient size. There are also kentungan made from bamboo stumps and carved. For wood, the thickness ranges between 25 cm or more in diameter and 1.5M -2M high. In the old mosques there is even a very large size like the photo I put above.
As a traditional communication tool, kentungan produces a loud and distinctive sound. The punch is tubular with a hole that is deliberately chiseled in the middle. From the hole, a sound will come out when you hit it. The kentungan is usually equipped with a bat that is deliberately used to hit the center of the kentungan to produce a distinctive sound. The chants are sounded with different rhythms to indicate different activities or events. The listener will automatically understand the message conveyed by the kentungan.



Kentungan is often identified with ancient communication tools that are often used by residents who live in rural and mountainous areas.
In ancient times, the sound of chanting would have been louder and not as noisy as it is now. The sound of kentungan can be heard by residents from all over the village. this makes kentungan an effective means of communication.

Kentungan is used for various things such as

1. Alarm and clock alert at night.

During the night watch, the patrollers hit kentungan when the clock shows the right time. For example, when the clock shows 12 o'clock, the patrol will hit a total of 12 punches. This can help people at home know that it is already 12 o'clock.
With kentungan we can also give an alarm to residents who want to wake up at night. The sound of kentungan will keep you awake from sleep.

2. Long distance communication signal.

The sound of kentongan being hit with a certain rhythm becomes a separate code. The villagers will know that certain blows to the kentungan are used to summon them. Before there were loudspeakers and modern telecommunications, kentungan was an effective way to remind mothers and residents to come to meetings, whether it be weighing toddlers, counseling, or community service.

3. Sign of Azan

Azan is a call to Muslims to perform prayers. Because in the past the residents worked in rice fields far from home, the mosque administrators would beat kentungan to remind residents that it was time for prayer.

4. Danger.

Kickers are also a sign for residents when doing the wheels. They will hit the punch when there is danger. To hit kentungan must know the type of danger that occurs.
Here are the danger signs and the rhythm of hitting the beat.

If there is a murder, then the kentungan is hit with a rhythm of one stroke one stroke and alternating pauses. for theft, every two strokes is paused. Three paused strokes indicate a house on fire. In the flash flood disaster, the kentungan will be hit four - four. if there is theft of an animal then the punch will be hit five - five. If we hit the chant non-stop then it is a sign that there is a danger that needs the help of many people. For a safe situation, pause one stroke and continue with many strokes then pause and end one stroke.
In this way, everyone in the village will know what events need attention


Initially, kentungan or kentongan was used as a companion tool for patrolling to notify thieves or natural disasters. In rural communities, kentungan is often used when small prayers or as a community call to the mosque when the prayer time has arrived. However, this traditional technology has transformed its function. In agrarian societies, they often uses kentungan as a means of repelling animals that damage crops and local rice, such as sparrows.
Currently, kentungan is also used as a musical instrument by combining other musical instruments, both traditional and modern.
This is a new breakthrough that people not only use as a caller or notification tool, but also use it to entertain. a good step in developing the traditional arts based on the fortunes.

Hopefully my writing this time is useful for all of us.

Thank you for reading my post. I hope you enjoy it


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