(From "Malay Language Course by pgoh13") This lesson on the various uses of the word "pun" is in response to an email received from Stephane Leplus, a student from France who wrote:
Hi
I was just wondering if you could provide me some help with the word pun which is often used but quite difficult to translate.
For example : saya pun ....
Di malaysia pun....
Tidak ada seorang pun...

  Various uses of the Malay word "pun"  

This very simple Malay word of one syllable is regularly used in day-to-day conversation among Malaysians and can take any of the meanings below:

1. as the equivalent of "too" in English eg.
Kerja itu senang sekali. Saya pun boleh buat. (That job is real easy. I too can do it.)
Di Malaysia pun orang menyambut Hari Krismas. (In Malaysia too people celebrate Christmas.)
In both the above sentences you should accentuate the word pun, thus Saya PUN boleh buat and Di Malaysia PUN etc. As a matter of fact this emphasis on the word pun is true for all the other sentences below too.
2. to denote similarity eg.
Itu kereta hitam. Ini pun kereta hitam. (That is a black car. This is also a black car.)
Saya akan pergi ke pasar esok. Dia pun akan pergi ke pasar esok. (I'll be going to the market tomorrow. He will also be going to the market tomorrow.)
Dia sangat letih. Saya pun sangat letih. (He is very tired. I am also very tired.)
In the above sentences "pun" can be replaced by "juga". In fact there is really not too much difference between paragraphs 1 and 2 as "too" and "also" are often interchangeable, just as in English.
3. with the sense of "so" i.e. one action resulting from another eg.
Saya nampak kawan saya di tepi jalan. Saya pun panggil dia. (I saw my friend on the pavement so I called him.)
Hujan turun dengan lebatnya. Saya pun buka payung saya. (It is raining heavily so I opened my umbrella.)
Bila dia mendengar kematian kawannya dia pun menangis. (When he heard of his friend's death he started to cry.)
4. with the meaning of "even to the extent of" eg.
Budak itu jahat betul, dipukul pun dia tak takut. (That boy is really incorrigible. He is not afraid even if he is beaten.)
Saya tidak suka kasut putih ini. Kalau percuma pun saya tak mau. (I don't like these white shoes. I will not want them even if they are free.)
Dia begitu sibuk, nak jumpa doktor pun dia tidak ada masa. (He is so busy that he hasn't even got time to see a doctor.)
5. used with siapa (= who) or sesiapa (= whoever) it means "anyone at all" eg.
Kerja itu tidak susah. Siapa pun boleh buat. (That job is not difficult. Anyone could do it.) Note that siapa pun have to be read together. There should not be a pause between the two words.
Majlis rumah terbuka Perdana Menteri pada hari raya dibuka kepada sesiapa pun. (The Prime Minister's open house gathering on hari raya is open to one and all.) Similarly sesiapa pun should be read together. There must not be a pause between the two words.
6. to show contrast in the sense of "what more" or "let alone" eg.
Orang dewasa pun tidak boleh buat kerja itu. Inikan budak. (Even an adult is not able to do the job, what more a boy like him.)
Dia tak tahu tulis namanya pun, tak kanlah dia akan tulis surat cinta! (He can't even write his name, let alone expect him to write a love letter!)
Kerja yang senang sekali pun dia tak dapat buat, apalagi kerja yang susah ini. (He can't even do the simplest of tasks, let alone a difficult one like this.)
7. used with "tidak" to give the sense of "not even" eg.
Tidak seorang pun yang datang menolongnya. (Not even a single person came to his aid.)
Dia begitu terperanjat, dia tidak dapat mengeluarkan apa-apa perkataan pun. (He was so dumbfounded he was not even able to utter a single word.)
Note: This word was used in illustrative sentences in Lessons 11, 44, 47 and 58 of the "Malay Language Course by pgoh13".