Latest Drum News

androidnew The Drum Dictionary: English - Sgaw Karen

Over 15 years in the making, the all new Drum Dictionary is now available to purchase on-line! With over 29,000 English headwords, verb phrases and idioms and 740 pages The Drum Dictionary is well over four times the size of our previous Student Dictionary.

To see a preview and/or purchase a hard copy, simply click of the cover


newDrum On-line Dictionary Goes Mobile! br> Subscribe to a Drum membership and get access to Drum's on-line dictionary ad-free, designed for use on mobile devices and which now includes the English Pronounciation of all Karen head words.

ga ruh hpoh
a member; someone who belongs to a group or association

Click on the phone to try it and for information on how to register.


Featured Article On the Drum Publication Group: May 6, 2013

Forms to Suggest New Words and Definitions and to Report errors in the on-line Dictionary
Drum needs your help in editing our ever growing dictionary database. With over 85,000 entries our small team needs your help to report errors and suggest new headwords and definitions.. New on-line forms are now available for visitors to point out English and Karen headwords which need revision or to suggest new entries. Please help us continue to improve our database by reporting any errors or suggesting new entries via the following links:. "Add or Revise an English Word Here" and "Add or Revise a Karen Word Here", (also available on the site's dictionary page).

New Drum Pop-up Dictionary
The aim of the new Drum Dictionary Pop-up window is to provide easy access to the Drum online dictionary database while working with open documents on your computer.  It features the ability to remain on top of program windows whereby unknown words, either English or Karen, can be dragged and dropped (or copied and pasted) into the search boxes for easy look up of definitions. For more information, click HERE. To load the pop-up window, click HERE

In the news

Digital Technology Can Prevent Language Loss (P'doh Harray Si: Nov, 2012)
Language professionals express that digital technology can prevent language loss.
Some scientists believe that due to cultural change, unequal social relationships and government oppression, half of the over 7000 living languages will disappear within 100 years.

David Harrison from Philadelphia university, USA, our growing preference towards using technology as an educational tool negatively affects the diversity of human languages.
Language experts coming from a different vantage point believe that Indigenous communities can maintain, even strengthen, their languages by adopting and transforming communication technologies such as the iPhone, Facebook, and internet sites focusing on Indigenous languages, music and culture.
For example, only 5000 people can currently speak one of the oldest aboriginal languages in North America, Anishinaablemowin, itself consisting of over 200 dialects.  For example, online learning of Anishinablemowin is available at .

Ah Oh Yoon, a professor from National University of Singapore who made a trip to Burma in 2002-03, said that Karen language could disappear within 10 years. After leaving from Burma, she wrote a book called: "Ethnic Consciousness and Allegiance to the State: Weak State and Weak(Ethnic) Society".  Obviously, her prediction was false.
Regarding Oh Yoon's book, Rev. Saw Win Ray Kyaw, resident of Yangon, said, "My family would continue to speak Karen if others can't speak."
Dr. Naw Lu May a resident of Yangon also commented, " If we cannot maintain our language and culture, we will lose our identity.  Then, we are dead. We cannot revive a dead person but we can try to revive our language."


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iPhone, Facebook,

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, "Ethnic Consciousness and Allegiance to the State: Weak State and Weak(Ethnic) Society"

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Revised Drum Web Site
Major revisions to the Drum website have been completed. Please make sure to update any bookmarks you have to our site as much of the format has been changed. The new format is best viewed in Firefox, Safari, Chrome, etc. but IE Explorer should be avoided. To help us continue to improve the site, your reporting of any broken links or other problem is appreciated and can be done via the Contact Us Page.


Drum Newsletter Now Available to Download
The Drum quarterly Newletter is now availabe to download from this website. In Sgaw Karen language, each edition included up-dated information on Drum recent activities, new publications, jokes and more. The most recent edition may be downloaded here.

New pages with information on Karen culture added

Automatically Alphabetize Karen language word lists in Excel
For the first, the Karen language can be automatically alphabetize! To download the tools and instructions for MS Excel, click here.

Community Information Documents Available for the Resettled
Materials developed by the Community Education Department of Worthington Minnesota USA, many based on materials of the Parent Institute for Quality Education Program in California are now available to download. With text in English and Sgaw Karen, it is hoped these can be adapted to assist those working to help the recently resettled Karen around the world. To download, click here

New Karen Community Radio Station Launched in Melbourne
A new weekly current affairs program in Karen language is now available each Wednesday morning, 7am - 8pm Australian local time. To listen now, click here

Listening to Voices from Inside: Ethnic People Speak
This insightful new study published by the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies showcases the voices of the people of Burma from civil society, and of different ethnic groups, who are rarely heard. Available to download here

New Karen Language Pages Added
New Karen language version web pages are being added to the Drum web site. For the first time ever, Karen language text, (not images of text) is available on a web site without the need for Karen fonts installed. This new method will allow Karen language to be viewed from any PC, the text can be copied and pasted and the content of every page will even show results from internet search engines. To view the Karen language version pages, click on the Karen flag icon.

Drum On-line Book Store books
New Sgaw Karen Language titles have been added to the Group's on-line bookstore. Click on the icon above to visit our storefront and remember to check back often as new books are being added regularly. The gift of a Drum publication makes for a perfect present for your Karen friends and also helps to support those Karen back home as all proceeds from their sale go towards supporting Karen community based projects.

Karen Language Ebooks
An ebook reader has been added to the Drum site which will allow visitors read Drum materials on-line or preview them prior to downloading. Visit the download page or click on the book icon to see an example: 20th Century Leaders ebook

Results of the Recent Drum Opinion Poll : "Would you recommend resettlement to a third country?" 75% Yes, 25% No
In a recent Drum Opinion Poll, visitors were asked: "Would you recommend resettlement to a third country?" Of the 102 replies 75% said Yes, they would; 25% said No, they wouldn't. 19 of those taking part were from Thailand, 2 from Burma and the remain 81 were from resettlement countries

Additional head words added to the on line Dictionary
As part of our on going development of our English - Sgaw Karen Dictionary, over 800 new English head words were recently added to our on-line dictionary database. Many of these new entries include an English definition as well as the Karen translation. Drum would like to thank all those who assisted with the editing of these new words and to ask those knowledgeable in Karen language to help us by joining our network of Karen editors from around the world. For more information on how you can help, please contact us

Writers needed for the Drum English  Sgaw Karen On-line Dictionary Database
The purpose of the Drum dictionary database is to establish the means by which Karen communities and individuals around the world can contribute towards the preservation and development of the Sgaw Karen language through the internet in cooperation with the Drum Publication Group and other community based organizations in Thailand.
Those knowledgeable in Sgaw Karen and English wishing to contribute to this project are encouraged to contact Drum and join our team of Writers which will work together to expand and develop English  Karen bi-lingual dictionaries.
This database will allow Writers to:

  • Conduct more detailed dictionary database searches
  • Add new entries to the on-line English  Sgaw Karen Dictionary
  • Edit existing entries
  • Be assigned lists of suggested new entries for editing and comments

Those interested in becoming a Writer, contact Drum here

Drum on line survey
To assist in evaluating this web site, please take a moment to complete our short on line survey here

Letter From Rangoon; Drowning
An informative article on the situation in Burma from THE NEW YORKER, August 25, 2008 available on line here

Drum's 10th anniversary: May 28th, 2008
May, 2008 marks the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the Drum Publication Group. Over the last decade, over 180 publications have been produced and the group would like to take this opportunity thank all those who have contributed to these works. We would also like to thank all donors and individuals who have provided financial support making this work possible. Ten years and the beat goes on.

On-line interpreter service now available
An on-line interpreter service for English, Sgaw Karen and Burmese languages is the latest addtion to our site. In recent months, Drum has had numerous requests from social workers, teachers and volunteers working to assist the recently resettled refugees in third countries for assistance in finding interpreters. Using Skype, the free PC to PC telephone service, those needing an interpreter can now speak to a member of Drum free of charge from anywhere with internet access. Click here

How you can help!!
With the assistance of our partner organization Drum Education and Cultural Heritage Outreach (Drum ECHO), we are now able to receive online donations using Paypal, a confidential, secure and encrypted payment service that enables you to use your credit card to make a donation straight into our account. All donations are tax deductable in the US and Canada with an emailed receipt provided for tax purposes.

Please help support the ongoing work of the Drum Publication Group by making an online donation. Any amount, however large or small, provides vital support to our work. All the money we receive goes directly to furthering our activites and projects. Donate here

Information for donor organizations interested in supporting the work of Drum is now available here

To all translators
Drum is ever working at increasing the number of words in our on-line English - Karen Dictionary. This is a huge and on going task which is a real challenge for our small team. The current dictionary contains approximately 7,000 English head words and the Group is working to increase this to over 20,000 words and could use your help. We are seeking the assistance of translators and native speakers of Sgaw Karen to comment on and make suggests for our expanded word lists. If you would like to help, please contact us