This difference makes translating things into or from Esperanto like solving a puzzle. This is not intended to be Esperanto-bashing. But why Esperanto? Yes, I know that Esperanto provides a way of forming gerunds and participles, but their use is still heavily reflective of the native language of the speaker. Why I Chose Esperanto And Why Learning A Constructed Language Isn't Bad - Duration: 9:32. However, unlike all other languages, the Esperanto language does not have its own country, nor does it have its own people.What it has instead is a community. I went to the store is different from I was going to the store, and different from I had been going to the store, but in Esperanto, they're all said with the same simple past tense. I have been wondering lately why I should teach my newborn son English. Is it possible, given the subtlety of the theory and the ambiguity of the evidence, that government policymakers will apply these ideas in a way that improves society as a whole? Further, none of this does a good job of differentiating perfective and imperfective action. Why Esperanto Failed (Quick Read) – The Coming of a Surprising Blog. Unlike natural languages, you don’t learn Esperanto because you’re fascinated by a country, people group or location. Anyway, the main reason is the first paragraph. Yet when economic historians examined the case more closely, this story turned out to be less fact than fiction. Do any of them sound the same? Since I am familiar with both Latin and French I am able to read texts in other Romanic languages – to a certain degrees. Copyright © 2021 The President and Fellows of Harvard College. Esperanto creator Ludwik Lejzer Zamenhof was born in 1859 in Bialystok, a multi-ethnic city that is in present-day Poland. As the story goes, this arrangement of letters was originally designed to prevent typists from jamming the keys on early typewriters. Summary: Today I'm going to put aside my biases and bring attention to a few specific details of Esperanto which give me an unfavorable opinion of it as a language. When it was created, Esperanto was intended to become everyone's second language, to bring equality to international communications. And given the fact that Esperanto is a second language for everyone, that means that everyone who speaks Esperanto speaks it with an accent. This debate over networks, keyboards, and market failure might seem like arcana only economists can love, but it is having a profound influence over public policy. Imagine how much difficulty that adds just to lexical parsing, nevermind the web searches, and other such problems. Esperanto has a great community around the world in some kind of diaspora, so has its own culture, books, podcasts, music, and a very interesting social group to meet. Other studies have shown that the QWERTY design is actually not so bad. In English, we're accustomed to a lot of this. Speakers of various languages develop certain ways of dealing with the conditions of awkward sounds. People left to their own devices, we argue, will typically achieve an outcome that is good for society as a whole--the vaunted invisible hand. N. Gregory Mankiw is an economics professor at Harvard and the author of Principles of Economics. It was invented to be easy, and it is. Esperanto, however, knows only the accusative case, and memorizing how to use it is a breeze. They don't even look the same. 5. Yes, I know that Esperanto provides a way of forming gerunds and participles, but their use is still heavily reflective of the native language of the speaker. Who. But Spanish has the same stress rules as Esperanto, with the penultimate syllable getting the stress. Everyone I know speaks English, but would Peter be better off learning a more sensible, mellifluous language, like maybe Italian? Partial though I am to La Internacia Lingvo (“the International Language”), let’s not exaggerate its prevalence on shortwave radio. A language has to be allowed to evolve with the needs of its speakers, or else it's nothing more than a relic — a cute, trite, literary oddity. The grammars of Classical Latin or Ancient Greek ha… Having studied Esperanto off and on for 20 years, I’m glad for the occasional chance to show off. That's not a good enough reason. So why learn it at all? In English, the “rules” have so many exceptions that it’s basically pointless to learn them. They dream of being the pioneers of the coming Esperanto revolution. 9:32. I listed them here. I read how Esperanto is recognized by the United Nations and is popular in certain parts of the world.The United Nations has also begun presenting the The UNESCO Courier, its widest ranging publication in Esperanto. There are estimated to be more than 2,000 Esperanto speakers in the UK and anything between 500,000 and two million worldwide. And yet they, too, are all easy to tell apart: кто (kto), что (shto), когда (kogda), кем (kem), как (kak), где (gde), куда (kuda), какой (kakoy), чем (chem), кого (kavo), and so on. Because Esperanto uses a simple case system which marks subjects and objects with nominative and accusative case markers respectively, subjects, objects and verbs can be put in any order (though subject-verb-object is the default order). It is, I admit, a stupid question. Why isn't it a problem in Spanish? But I know that some of you cultured folks prefer the written word, so let me explain it here as well. If Australia spoke Esperanto, the language barriers wouldn't be that bad, ESPECIALLY FOR ASIANS. First, let me be clear about my intent. Question words are among the most important words in a language. Rather than sticking to the formula, a number of people have taken it upon themselves to write ch, gh, js, and sh for the ĉ, ĝ, ĵ, and ŝ characters. Everyone knows about the rolled R in the Spanish language, but unless you're a fluent speaker, you might not have noticed that it's heavily rolled at the beginning of a word, but barely rolled at all in the middle. Thus, Esperanto uses diacritical marks on consonant letters. In English, those words all sound different. There are a couple of main reasons people learn Esperanto. English, Chinese, Swahili, and many other languages use word order indicate objects. Esperanto is not allowed to fracture, and shift, and become regional, 10 Reasons Spanish Is The Best Language To Learn, Get updated on the highest quality language learning resources, Find out not only what I use, but how I use it, Get regular updates on my language missions. It is, I admit, a stupid question. The answer is that everyone learns English because everyone else learns it. And I've occasionally seen other non-standard digraphs used as well. If different people spoke different dialects of Esperanto, it's would no longer be a universal language. (m bork 3!) Esperanto is not perfectly international but I think it's as good as can be while still be easy to learn. Or will any attempt to do so be overrun by ignorance, hubris, and politics as usual? The initial hope of Zamenhof, and indeed of most people in the auxiliary language movement, was that the global language would be imposed top-down, by a committee of wise people. You should never find yourself talking to someone who doesn't anunciate clearly, or who has an accent, wondering if he asked you "when are you going" or "where are you going", right? And in an alphabetical list, in which order do the words ĉiu, chiu, and cxiu fall? Seabolt TV 1,901 views. Kio, Kiel, Kiam, Kiu, Kia, Kiom, Kies, etc. First Principles. Why I Chose Esperanto And Why Learning A Constructed Language Isn't Bad - Duration: 9:32. Esperanto is a gateway to different cultures, which makes your life easier learning other languages. Not bad, huh? In other words, there's no good way to differentiate an action that was done in the past from an action that was ongoing at the point of reference in the past. This, theorists argued, was a network-driven market failure: People still type on this inefficient keyboard just because that's what everybody else does. Esperanto has 900 standard roots, which is a step in the right direction, but still about 3 times more than what I'd say is essential. So humor me: Why are American children taught English? When it was created, Esperanto was intended to become everyone's second language, to bring equality to international communications. A living language is allowed to change over time, but Esperanto is only allowed to grow, not to change. Esperanto, Here, is a 3. ", you shouldn't answer a "who?" Which then leads us to the problem of: if you're going to use digraphs, why have the special characters at all? In most cases, economists are defenders of unfettered markets. That being said, 3 means that it is used as a vehicle essentially for various groups and cultures to communicate with. This is a huge comprehension problem. Obviously, any concerns or desires for Esperanto to become a dominate second language are gonna remain strictly hypothetical. Of course the creator of the language recognized this difficulty, and created a series of digraphs for representing these sounds: cx, gx, hx, jx, sx, and ux. Rursus dixit. Okay, I know I've said Esperanto is more religion than language, and I've complained about how few people there are with whom to use Esperanto. You can't, because it's not really there. It is easy to imagine that people might get stuck with a bad network that once established is hard to replace. (m bork 3!) Is French Hard to Learn? But that is exactly the problem with Esperanto: not only did that natural evolution never happen in the creation of this language, but worse, it's not allowed to happen on its own, because changes to the language would defeat the whole purpose and point of having it. In the Land of Invented Languages by Akira Okrent. This was a short blog post that I spontaneously decided to create! To some network theorists, these arguments justify government involvement in the software industry. question, right? The bad. After he suggested that Esperanto replace English as an international lingua franca, it began to be used in the seminaries of Qom. Associating a language with a culture An interesting comment on Guardian article above highlights one reason people are more keen to learn less formal ConLangs over more established ones: Esperanto is not allowed to fracture, and shift, and become regional. The Russian language famously stacks up three or four consonants on top of each other every chance it gets, but if you listen to a Russian speak, you quickly realize that they only ever pronounce one, or maybe two, of those consonants. Esperanto has 900 standard roots, which is a step in the right direction, but still about 3 times more than what I'd say is essential. Esperanto has no country or geographical ties to an ancestral homeland. I have been wondering lately why I should teach my newborn son English. Without doubt the most common and sensible reason why myself and so many others are turned off Esperanto is that it has no authentic culture. Esperanto is a constructed language, what some people might call an “artificial language” or “man-made language”. bad translation in English-Esperanto dictionary. If the government thinks it should set software standards, why not really make the world better and require Esperanto in schools? The claim that other keyboard layouts substantially increased typing speeds was based on a study by August Dvorak, the designer of an alternative layout who had a financial stake in that conclusion. For example, the word молоко, which has three о's, but it's pronounced muh-lah-kohe. Want to see my favorite resources for learning languages? Esperanto is a widely spoken universal language. That is, native English speakers will try to form sentences using gerunds and participles, and native speakers of other languages will be completely lost. And so, rather than making any attacks against the language or the people who speak it, I would like to draw attention to five very specific details about the language itself which I perceive to be major flaws. Since I am familiar with both Latin and French I am able to read texts in other Romanic languages – to a certain degrees. In spite of a huge number of words, mostly starting with the same sound, they are all easy to distinguish. An Esperanto translation of the Qur'an was published by the state shortly thereafter. Well, most people want the result of knowing another language, but are unwilling or unable to put up with the slog through grammatical rules and vocabulary lists to get there. Say these words to yourself: Cómo, Qué, Quién, Dónde, Cuando. It's one of the easiest languages to learn! Esperanto is a constructed auxiliary language.Its creator was L. L. Zamenhof, a Polish eye doctor.He created the language to make international communication easier. You tell me. 6. Want to see my favorite language resources and courses? And quite hard to hear at all after a T or a B. In spite of the fact that they all start with the same sound, there's no risk of confusion unless you're talking to a drunken redneck with a hotdog in his mouth. While the digraphs may have seemed like a good solution in 1903, it's a horrible solution in 2010, because we now have online databases and search engines and cached repositories of words spelled in a variety of different ways. I think it is an enjoyable quick read about why Esperanto failed. I think both of the reasons I gave originally were not given yet, exactly, in the other answers. Why does the Criticism of Esperanto article start off with why one should learn Esperanto? First, because the grammar has been cleansed of irregularities. A question is, of course, if it would be actually a bad thing if Esperanto would ever evolve into dialects. Why We Don't Speak Esperanto. Why throw in an unnecessary case system? So everyone defaults back to the simple past. The only difference between English and Windows, the argument goes, is that English is free. Where. Right from the start, the first flaw a person immediately becomes familiar with are these six non-Latin characters: ĉ, ĝ, ĥ, ĵ, ŝ, and ǔ. Non-Latin characters are generally more difficult to work with anyway, especially in this modern world of wireless communication from a 12-key phone pad... but to make things even worse, three of those six characters don't exist in any other known language, which makes it significantly difficult, or even impossible, for many people to type those letters at all. There are those who will argue that Esperanto is a living language, but they base that on the fact that new words are added regularly, and that doesn't make it a living language. As is so often the case here: there are some good answers (Vote #1 Andreu Massana’s answer; Vote #2 or #3 Laurie Chilvers’ answer), there are some bad answers, and this is my answer.. The Roman alphabet simply doesn't have enough letters to spell them all, at least not when one tries to avoid absurd letter values. Why does the Criticism of Esperanto article start off with why one should learn Esperanto? The accusative case has a bad reputation of being hard to learn in German, Russian, and other languages, where you have several dozens of endings and changes to memorise, on top of the other cases that require yet more changes. One excellent example of this problem is in my second complaint, regarding nuance. I use Esperanto before 30 years and I can tell you that all your points against Esperanto is the result of bad information. They need to be clear and easily distinguished. In English, we have dozens of ways to alter verb tense, in order to convey additional implications in a statement. Esperanto?! Many of its faults are clearly due to its method of creationand the prevailing attitudes of the time, in particular the latenineteenth-century "mechanistic" belief that all human language couldbe fitted into a fully logical and rational framework - "a sort ofvoiced Dewey Decimal System", as Mark Rosenfelder succinctly puts itin his analysis of the twentieth century - www.zompist.com/predic.htm. The prefix mal- in Esperanto is particularly inopportune because in several languages 'mal' means 'bad' or 'wrong' (as in English 'malformed', 'malodorous' etc). There is nothing to be gained from merely prejudiced attacks. Spiegel & Grau, 2009. In a network the benefit one person gets from using some good--in this case, English--depends on the number of other people using it. Why Esperanto is Fun. A frequent claim is that computer operating systems are like languages: Once a standard becomes dominant, it is practically impossible for anyone to consider an alternative, even a better one. Rursus dixit. He was an eye doctor who specialized on the eyeball and orbit. In this blog, you will discover a bunch of proven tips on how to crack the language-learning game! 7. No objective discussion would be complete without discussing also the negatives. Is that not counter-intuitive? And on the topic of Russian, there is that whole vowel reduction thing, where а and о sound different depending on where the stress falls in a word. Just give me a bit of time. Rather, this is a matter of paying attention to specific details of a language and how those details affect the speaker, and in turn, the overall perception of the language itself. How this happens and how the government might lend a helping hand in the process remain open issues. The number of Esperanto speakers is sufficient to support an impressive array of congresses and other international meetings. If I ask you "what? Why throw in an unnecessary case system? The more relevant question is why are/ were many leftists drawn to Esperanto. And Zamenhoff would have done well to consider that. Seabolt TV 2,041 views. Networks fascinate economic theorists because they don't fit neatly into the standard model of how markets work. The word base of Esperanto was originally defined in Unua Libro ("First Book"), published by L. L. Zamenhof in 1887. 188.8.131.52 21:04, 15 December 2009 (UTC) It doesn't. 184.108.40.206 21:04, 15 December 2009 (UTC) It doesn't. Ido has the international prefix des- (similar to English dis- as in 'disappear'). If you`re wondering what Esperanto is, the video above (featuring me) should give you some decent info. It contained around 900 root words. But stupid questions can contain the seeds of great insights. There actually are two known methods for expressing some form of verb aspect, but neither is official nor required by the language, and using and understanding them necessitates familiarity with the Slavic influeces from which they are taken. Plus some of countries where it is strongest don't have indo … In Australia, language barriers for English exists cause English is a bulls*** language. Commonality with internationalist solidarity, linguistic equality, anti-war/ pacifism, anti-nationalism and other themes are/ were the primary motivations for left leaning activists to learn Esperanto. There are a couple of main reasons people learn Esperanto. Yet even these theorists are unsure what the government should do. Is that not counter-intuitive? This is a very basic concept that exists in all languages I have experience with. Zamenhof was also referred to as Doktoro Esperanto (Dr. Esperanto). 3 is a bit of a tricky situation, because it's not part of the hierarchy. Here we examine a few reasons why the more unlikely ConLangs are booming in a sphere when Esperanto could be expected to flourish. Esperanto is widely spoken for a constructed language, but in comparison to something like Spanish, it’s not as useful day-to-day, as you won’t run into as many people who speak it. Okay, at first you're thinking "every foreign language is uncomfortable at first", and at first blush, you're right. No. Despite our scant understanding of how networks work, expect this new theory to pop up not only in the Microsoft case now winding its way toward trial but in future antitrust cases as well. Despite the availability of superior designs, and the fact that jamming keys is no longer an issue, QWERTY remains the standard. Esperanto has rules, like all languages, but there’s a crucial difference: because it’s a constructed language, there are no exceptions to the rules. Contractions, vowel reduction, devoicing, all the linguistic phenomena that were excluded from the constructed language. Why. How else can we explain why the Japanese keep speaking Japanese when less complicated languages are available, or why we aren't all speaking Esperanto--the "ideal" language that was supposed to become the world language? But in Esperanto, all the question words are two-syllable words, and the stressed syllable is the same in every word! Why learn Esperanto? But dialects are the only way that a language can evolve and develop the characteristics which allow people to express themselves comfortably and clearly, and with the nuance and subtlety available in any other language! The Esperanto language is a language (almost) like any other. This particular stupid question leads to the frontier of economic theory, as well as to the intellectual foundation for the government's case against Microsoft (a corporation that, I should disclose, has paid me to speak on its behalf in its current antitrust skirmish). This answer now seems like it has two reasons, but in my mind, they go together: it is beautiful as any other language, but that still doesn't explain why Esperanto specifically. 16:34, 26 February 2010 (UTC) Many passionate Esperanto speakers would try to convince you that there are none, but not everything about Esperanto is that great: This plenitude of consonants led to a problem with the orthography. 7. English, Chinese, Swahili, and many other languages use word order indicate objects. If they were to lose this multi-cultural background, languages that were ranked as a … 16:34, 26 February 2010 (UTC) Unlike many other languages, you can depend on the rules to be constantly applied, instead of sporadically Because of these factors, it is more quickly and easily learned than any other languages. 6. It uses suffixes instead of word order to indicate subject and object. That is, native English speakers will try to form sentences using gerunds and participles, and native speakers of other languages will be completely lost. Obviously, any concerns or desires for Esperanto to become a dominate second language are gonna remain strictly hypothetical. These diacritical marks cause trouble with comp… And this problem is duplicated in the answering words: Tio, Tia, Tie, Tiu, etc. It Makes Sense Esperanto has 16 regular and exception-free rules of grammar and a regular phonetic spelling. So why learn it at all? 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