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Gibretta, Ingrid. 209220022. Theme and Rheme in Djaga Depari’s Song Lyrics. A Thesis. Medan. Faculty of Languages and Arts. State University of Medan. UNIMED. 2013.



A great thank to Heavenly Father Jesus Christ for blessing and protection that the writer has been granted so she can finally complete this thesis as a partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Sarjana Sastra. The writer is aware that only by God’s help; she can finish her study and find some solutions for many difficulties and troubles during the completion of this thesis. During the process of writing and conducting her thesis, she has accepted a lot of assistance of some people. The writer’s special appreciation goes to:

Prof. Dr. Ibnu Hajar Damanik, M.Si as the Rector of State University of


Dr. Isda Pramuniati, M.Hum as the Dean of Faculty of Languages and

Arts State University of Medan and to all her staffs.

Prof. Dr. Hj. Sumarsih, M.Pd as the Head of English Department. Dra. Rahmah, M.Hum as the Secretary of English and Literature

Department, and Dra. Meisuri, MA as the Head of Applied Linguistics,and also Dra. Masitowarni Siregar, M.Ed as the Head of English Education and the writer’s Academic Counselor who has given her support to the writer’s thesis topic..

Prof. Amrin Saragih, M.A., Ph.D as the writer’s Thesis Supervisor for

his guidance, advices, suggestions, valuable ideas, and precious time he had given during the completion of this thesis.

Mam Endah and Mam Indri who have helped the writer in providing the

academic administration.

The writer’s greatest family, Tenang Ginting and Rosmalinda br

Tarigan for their countless love, supports, prayers and patience and

financial supports in her entire life and during her study. The writer would never forget to say thanks to Sagitha Devy Ginting, her beloved sisters, who give wonderful supports and motivations in finishing this thesis and thanks to her beloved sweetheart Arev Samuel, who give huge love to her.

Special thanks also go to her dearest friends Eva Inriani Rajagukguk,

Elisa Perdana, Rosni L Pasaribu, Lusi Rensi Hutagalung, Nindy Prameswari, Sisna Astuti Sitepu, Anita Rebekawati Manurung, Juniar Selpiana and the gangs, M. Irham Taufik and the gangs, Leny Situmorang and the gangs, Fransiska Bangun, Bang Jamez Hahn Tarigan, Bang Agus, Bang Roy, and all the collegians of Applied

Linguistics especially Applied Linguistics A & B 2009 and others that cannot be mentioned in this thesis one by one.

May God our Father and The Lord Jesus Christ give us grace and peace. Jesus Christ blesses us forever.

Medan, March 2013

Ingrid Gibretta



Table Page


: Table of Conjunctive Adjunct...17


: Table of Mood Adjuncts...18


: Table of Conjunctions...19


: Table of Relatives...20


: Table of Examples of Theme and Rheme...21


: Table of Example of Multiple Theme...22


: Table of Identification of the Types of Theme...34



Appendix Page





A. The Background of the Study

Generally person likes to listen to the music, especially songs. Song is as

universal as language that everyone can express their feelings, their thought, and

their experience by using a song, either by writing song or singing song.

Sometimes people do not know what the meaning of the song is because they just

enjoy the rhythm. That is why it is significant to explain about language which its

essence is to give information. A composer always tries to deliver the ideas of his

or her songs to the listener. One of the legend composers of Karo songs is Djaga

Depari. National Composers Djaga Depari was not just writes songs about

romance in Karo life but he also wrote songs about struggle of Karo people

against the colonizer of foreign nations in Karo’s region. His songs describe the

struggle of the people of Karo made him known as a composer of national

Republic of Indonesia.

This research deals with textual function of selected Karo’s song that all

songs composed by Djaga Depari. The Karo’s songs are chosen because they have

many functions. Songs can be used as learning media such as to ease people to

know about the culture of Karonese. Karonese is one of the branches of

Bataknese. But people almost do not familiar about Karonese. So, these analyses

give information to people about Karonese through Karo’s songs. By listen the



Language is the most important aspect in human life and is used to

communicate with others and express inner thoughts and emotions either in

spoken or written. Language is so basic to our existence that life without words is

difficult to envision (Gleason and Ratner, 1993:2). Language is not an isolated

system; it is part of human culture and the way of life. The purposes of language

use and meanings come from the social contexts and the language is organized to

serve social functions. These are reflected in the grammar. Grammar is the central

processing unit of language, the powerhouse where meanings are created

(Halliday, 1994:15).

A language is a coding system and a means by which information may be

transmitted or shared between two or more communicators for purposes

of command, instruction or play. Language is used in order to talk about our

experience of the world; including the worlds in our own minds, to describe

events and states and the entities involved in them (Thompson, 1996:28).

Language may be used to perform many communicative functions. The most

important function of language is the communication of information. Language

has three major functional components called as language metafunctions. Three

metafunctions of language are identified by Halliday in Systemic Functional

Linguistics, namely (1) the ideational function, (2) the interpersonal function and

(3) the textual function. Bilal mentioned that (2012:726):



hearer. The textual metafunction is about the verbal world, especially the flow of information in a text.

Based on Halliday that the ideational function is the 'content function of language'

(2007: 183). It is realized in transitivity and serves to represent situations and

information structure and cohesion (Bilal, 2012:726).

In this case, it is important to study about Theme and Rheme. Halliday

(1994: 36) argues that:

The Theme is the element which serves as the point of departure of the message; it is that with which the clause is concerned. The remainder of the message, the part in which the Theme is developed, is called in Prague school terminology the Rheme.

There are three types of Theme namely: (a) Ideational or Topical, (b) Textual, and

(c) Interpersonal. Ideational or Topical Theme consists of: (1) Unmarked Topical

Themes and (2) Marked Topical Themes. The textual Theme is any combination

of (i) continuative, (ii) structural and (iii) conjunctive (Halliday, 1994: 53). Based

on Eggins (1994:278) stated that it is called Interpersonal Theme when a

constituent to which would assign a Mood label (but not Transitivity label) occurs

at the beginning of a clause. The interpersonal Theme is any combination of (i)

vocative, (ii) modal, (iii) mood-marking (Halliday, 1994:53).

Theme and Rheme can be analyzed through the written text or spoken.



the aspects of Theme such as simple, multiple, unmarked and marked Theme. In

fact, many people difficult to identify the Theme and Rheme in a clause and

distinguished unmarked and marked Theme.

Music is a branch of abstract arts in the form of sounds. Lyrics are a set

of words that make up a song, usually consisting of verses and choruses. If the

music included to the lyric will make a song be harmony. Most of the people in

this world like songs and enjoy the songs by listening to it by using the tape

recorder, MP3, MP4, compact disc, and cassette. Every song has meaning in its

lyric or sentences. A song is a composition for voice or voices, performed

by singing. The meaning of lyrics can either be explicit or implicit. Some lyrics

are abstract, almost unintelligible and in such cases their explication

emphasizes form, articulation, meter, and symmetry of expression. Language can

build a meaning of a song. Language is very important because it is means of

communication. He or she will choose the right words that she or he thinks can

best convey his or her thought, feeling and experience.

Thus, by analyzing Karo’s songs through functional grammar; the writer

can find out the focusing of Karo’s songs, whether it is focused on activities or

entities. By conducting this research, the writer can describe the Karo’s songs and

its meaning from functional grammar point of view. The writer can figure out

whether the textual meanings of Karo’s songs are monotone or not. In this

research, the writer limits on analyzing the data without changing the lyrics of the



It is significant to analyze Theme and Rheme in Karo’s songs in order to

find out what types are dominantly used in Karo’s songs. In addition, the analysis

of Theme and Rheme in this study must be lyric by lyric. After finding the

dominant type of Theme, we can compare how many percent the dominant type of

Theme used in Djaga Depari’s (henceforth DD) selected song.

B. The Problems of The Study

Based on the background of this study, the problems of the study are

formulated as following.

1. What types of Theme are used in ten selected DD’s song lyrics?

2. What is the dominant type of Theme used in the lyrics?

3. In what context is the dominant Theme used?

C. The Objectives of The Study

In line with the problems, the objectives are.

1. to describe the types of Theme used in DD’s song lyrics,

2. to derive the dominant type of Theme used in the song lyrics and

3. to elaborate the contextual occurrence of the use of dominant Theme in the

song lyrics.

D. The Scope of The Study

This study is focused on the Textual Functions applied in Karo’s songs. All



lyric of ten songs will not be analyzed. The concepts of Theme and Rheme are

textual function which explains in the most general way how a message is

organized in language. The data will take from browsing internet.

E. The Significance of The Study

The findings of this study are significant in two respects, theoretically and

practically. Theoretically, the findings are expected to enrich theories of Systemic

Functional Linguistics (SFL), particularly on the use of English in Indonesian

context of culture. Practically, the findings are helpful for the listener of DD’s





A. Conclusions

After analyzing the Theme and Rheme in Djaga Depari’s song lyrics,

conclusions are drawn as the following

(1)There are three types of Theme used in Djaga Depari’s song lyrics; they are 81

Topical Theme, 49 Interpersonal Theme and 37 Textual Theme.

(2) The most dominant Theme is used in Djaga Depari’s songs is Topical Theme.

(3)Topical Theme is dominantly used when he describes meaning, gives

argumentation and tells about the events.

B. Suggestions

In relation to the conclusions, suggestions are presented as the following

(1)It is suggested that everyone who wants to do a similar research should focus

the attention to Theme used in the songs to stimulate people to do some


(2)It is also suggested that others researcher should conduct further researches on

Theme and Rheme in other field of studies.

(3)It is advised that Karonese who has study in applied linguistics should




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