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Language Justice And Esperanto

Despite believing in Esperanto, I’ve hesitated to be an Esperanto activist so far. This is probably because I have other social justice topics I consider more important, such as trans issues and feminism. When large numbers of your trans friends have attempted suicide, and large numbers of your female* friends have been raped, language justice doesn’t seem so urgent.

Perhaps that’s just me. I think I’m happy that there are Esperanto activists in the world. I just don’t feel drawn to spending much of my energy on that personally.

Perhaps it’s also because as with feminism, veganism, and other social justice movements, Esperanto tends to come under fire as soon as it’s brought up (see my article on proteining for more). I regularly stand up for the other movements I identify with, and yet when it comes to Esperanto I feel so… tired. If people are so desperate to deface Esperanto I kind of resign myself to letting them do that.

Nevertheless, in a recent conference I was at, centered around social justice in all its forms, someone asked me to do a talk on Esperanto, and I stepped up to the challenge. I suddenly had to spend some time thinking and coming up with some decently-phrased arguments. While I doubt I will end up spending much more of my energy on Esperanto activism, I don’t regret giving it a go. (And never say never…)

Here’s what I came up with.

Language Justice

Esperanto constitutes a social justice movement.

We can call this “language justice”.

While the language we use to bring about language justice doesn’t have to be Esperanto, Esperanto is the one with the greatest following and which seems more or less best for the job out of those we have available. I can imagine how we could make a better language in terms of social justice, yet I don’t believe it would be worth it to throw away all the progress we have made in propagating Esperanto, even if it were possible to replace it.

Esperanto is not perfect, but I believe that it is a) good enough for now, and b) much better than the alternative of accepting the status quo as far as languages are concerned.

Esperanto As A Neutral Language

In what way does Esperanto create a more just world?

The most common argument is that Esperanto is a neutral language.

This means that it is not attached to a single country or political entity, and is not complicit in dominating other cultures. On the contrary, the Esperanto culture is one of inclusivity. While most people who learn English will never consider themselves English or Anglosaxon, those who learn Esperanto are immediately welcomed as an equal member of the Esperanto culture.

When English is used as an auxiliary language, those who were brought up in English speaking countries have an advantage. They speak English better in general, have to spend no time or energy in actively learning it after childhood, and don’t experience the anxiety which often accompanies having to speak a second language and risk making mistakes.

The latter point is important. People who speak English as a second language usually experience some level of anxiety when speaking English, especially when speaking it with a native English speaker. This native English speaker is in some way the arbiter of what is good or bad English, and that creates a power imbalance. The native English speaker is naturally more confident in the interaction, and can focus their energies on other things than the language they are speaking. If you think about it, there are many ways in which this can lead to native English speakers subtly dominating or influencing those who speak English as a second language.

Esperanto, on the other hand, doesn’t have this power imbalance. Almost everyone speaks Esperanto as a second language, levelling the playing field. Even those who learnt it from their parents probably learnt an imperfect version of Esperanto; I believe this prevents there being the subtle feeling that this person is the arbiter of what is good or bad Esperanto. Asides from that, it’s just much harder to make mistakes in Esperanto because the language is so much more simple and permissive. Any word you invent in Esperanto according to the basic rules is automatically correct. On the other hand, words like “uneatable” are incorrect in English, even though as far as logic is concerned they make perfect sense.

I think Esperanto fosters a unity and equality of cultures and peoples which is very enjoyable to see. When I go to an Esperanto event, people from all different cultures are given the same value, and their voices are weighted equally. There is a more open conversation going on, ideas from diverse places flowing more freely than in a place where English is used. It’s a subtle thing, perhaps, but it just feels more friendly and less oppressive. As someone who was given the privilege of growing up in an Anglosaxon country, I don’t find that I gain especially in being able to express myself more freely, but it is very pleasurable to see my friends gain that power.

Esperanto Vs. Linguistic Hegemony

Related to this, Esperanto fights linguistic hegemony.

Languages have historically been connected to countries and empires. When a political entity dominated a place, it also imposed its language. In this way it imposed its culture, its way of thinking, and its identity.

I believe that languages have an inherent beauty and value, as do the cultures, ways of thinking, and identities they are connected to. I believe that killing a language is a terrible thing to do. And let’s be clear, languages do not “naturally” die out.

Still, I do see the value in having an auxiliary language. I lived in Spain for 9 years, and being able to speak Spanish in the Basque Country and Catalonia was incredibly helpful for me. It would seem that Spanish hegemony helped me. And in a way that is true, but I believe that there are solutions to the problem of intercommunication between cultures that do not involve violence as the imposition of Spanish did.

Instead of using Spanish to communicate between different cultures in the Iberian Peninsula, let us use Esperanto. Suddenly, there would be no imbalance of power privileging those living in central and southern Spain. Everyone would spend the same amount of time learning the auxiliary language (and less time would be spent overall), and no-one’s culture would be erased.

In the UK, we have the same issue with Welsh, Gaelic, Cornish, Manx, and Scots. In France, there is Basque, Breton and Occitan. In the USA there are all the different native languages that were repressed through European colonisation. And so on. In all these cases, the use of Esperanto could prevent the privileging of the dominant language, and in turn reduce the violence perpetrated against the minority languages and their respective peoples and cultures. These smaller cultures could be restored to their previous dignity, valued as an equal part of the region they are in.

I have thought about this in relation to the relatively recent emergence of Europe as a political entity. While I am critical of all political entities, I believe in Europe, because it emerged after the Second World War basically as a way of preventing conflict between the cultures, and it has slowly moved towards greater integration and equality within its boundaries (e.g. allowing people from some poorer countries to migrate freely to richer countries, much to the chagrin of tabloid newspapers).

A single language would be a powerful unifying force for Europe. However, seeing as Europe grew in unity not through domination but through a voluntary act made by each participating country, there is no way we could impose a single language on it as conquering powers would. Whatever language from Europe we choose to be the main European language, those who speak every other language will reject it – and rightly so, as they will perceive they are being made subordinate.

If we used Esperanto, we could create a unity in Europe without imposing a cultural hegemony. I believe something like Esperanto is the only way we could solve this problem, if we ever have a mind to.

Language Justice In Relation To Poverty

Finally, Esperanto reduces power imbalances by redistributing how resources are spent.

In this case, I’m talking about the time, energy and money that needs to be spent on learning English as a second language. These resources are often interchangeable; those who struggle most to get adequate money are usually those with the least time and energy to spare.

Naturally, those who speak English as a native language never have to spend time, energy or money on learning English as a second language. Many learn second languages anyway, but they rarely have the same economic incentive to do so. For some in non-English speaking countries, knowing English can be a way out of poverty, and the need to learn English can be a force that keeps them in poverty.

Poverty means having less time, energy and money – things that would allow someone to learn English as a second language. This means that those who would be brought out of poverty by knowing an auxiliary language are instead kept in it, as they don’t have the resources. This is not justice.

Besides this, knowing the auxiliary language of the world gives us access to so much information and culture which enriches our life in ways beyond just the economic. It is a privilege that is currently not afforded to much of the world’s poor.

Esperanto would level the playing field by making native English speakers spend the same resources in learning the auxiliary language.

It would also mean that people spend a lot less energy overall on learning languages. Studies show that Esperanto can be learnt approximately ten times faster than equivalent natural languages. Think about this for a moment. Thousands, billions of hours would be saved worldwide if we switched from English to Esperanto. What’s more, this would have its greatest positive impact on the most impoverished of us. Those who were too poor to learn the auxiliary language would suddenly be able to learn it; and those who spent much of their limited resources on learning would suddenly find themselves with much more resources to spare. More, and poorer, people would be able to benefit from the auxiliary language.

The Problem Of Esperanto As A Euro-Centric Language

Those are the main reasons why Esperanto is a powerful force for social justice.

Now, I couldn’t finish this article without mentioning some ways in which Esperanto fails in terms of social justice.

One of the main criticisms of Esperanto is that it is a Europe-centric language; that is, it is constructed more or less entirely from European languages, and gives an unfair advantage to those who know those languages.

It’s hard to argue against this. Esperanto does privilege those who speak European languages, especially Romance languages.

My responses to these arguments are not intended to deny this basic fact, but to attenuate it a little. After all, my position is that despite its faults, Esperanto is worth it. I think people often pay too much attention to the problems of Esperanto without paying enough attention to the great benefits it offers. Ultimately I think this is a way of proteining, or dismissing Esperanto out of hand because of an unspoken bias.

So, yes, Esperanto is a European-centric language. However, when it was created Europe was not a political entity, and at the moment, despite being loosely unified politically, it is still very diverse culturally. (As well as this, the E.U. excludes Russia, whose language contributes to the vocabulary of Esperanto). There may be similar elements in different European cultures, but I think you can’t really say that there is an actual European culture per se, and because of this you can’t say that Esperanto creates cultural hegemony in the same way.

The other matter is that Esperanto is much easier than other languages. This means that the difference in ease of learning between those who speak similar languages to Esperanto and those who don’t is much smaller.

As well as this, I’d point out that a different constructed language – Lojban – tried to be as equal as possible by using the six most spoken languages of the time: English, Spanish, Chinese, Arabic, Hindi, and Russian. It’s a smart approach, right? Except that four out of the six were Indo-European languages. And just as you can connect elements of different European cultures, you can connect elements of Indo-European cultures. On the other hand, you can’t say that either of those constitute a single culture.

Besides this, each of these six languages – indeed, every natural language in the world – was propagated by conquest. Each of these languages constitutes cultural hegemony. So I believe that there is no way you could construct a language out of natural languages without having some kind of power imbalance, simply because of the nature of the exercise. With this in mind, I believe the most realistic goal is to go for a mixture that does not come from a single cultural entity, and otherwise to use languages which will make our constructed language easier to learn.

Esperanto is easy to learn for speakers of English, Spanish, Russian, French, and Portuguese, all among the top ten most spoken languages in the world. These together constitute about 1.5 billion people. On the other hand the remaining languages in the top ten constitute about 2 billion; but apart from Hindi and Bengali they don’t share many characteristics with each other (source for these stats). So, I think while problematic in some ways, focusing on European languages does give Esperanto the power to reach a lot of people.

Finally, the people who criticise Esperanto for being a European-centric language usually don’t have any alternatives to propose. It seems, then, that they don’t really seem to care about bringing about a neutral world language; it seems that they just want to criticise Esperanto. Effectively, by advocating against Esperanto without proposing an alternative they are advocating for the status quo: English as the world auxiliary language. And I think by now you should understand the serious issues with that.

Sexism In Esperanto

The other problem people have with Esperanto is sexism.

I hate this aspect of Esperanto myself; not because it is more sexist than other languages, but simply because it is about as sexist as them, and it could have been done differently. In the creator’s defence, though, it was created in 1887, when feminism was not widely talked about or accepted.

The problem with Esperanto is that the masculine gender is assumed, whereas the feminine gender is something that is added onto a word. “Frato” means brother, but “fratino” means sister. To say “brothers and sisters” you can use the awkward construct “gefratoj”; however, much of the time people just use the masculine as a gender-neutral as it’s easier, and it’s intuitive to think that a word without a suffix is neutral. In this way, men are shown to be the “normal” sort of person, and women are shown to be secondary and additional to men.

There is a movement to correct this issue. In Riisma Esperanto, “frato” would mean “brother or sister”, “fratino” would mean sister, and “fratiĉo” would mean brother. I find this system much more intuitive as well as being less humiliating to use as a woman. It still leaves us with the problem that pretty much every word that is usually gendered comes from a root word that is masculine: “Viro” meaning “man”, “Onklo” meaning uncle, and so on. For some reason I shudder when I have to say the word for aunt – “onklino” – it just seems so ugly.

But, one step at a time, I suppose. For now I’m happy that the feminist version of Esperanto is fairly easy to use and pretty widely understood; certainly far more widely than the feminist version of any other language I can think of. Its one problem is that people who don’t know about it often misunderstand you. I call my partner my “koramiko”, for instance, which I consider gender-neutral, but which some would interpret as male. This once induced a person into a gender-panic: “Tabea is a woman, right? Right??“. But, it works, and I’m happy it exists. I believe that if any language has a chance to change and express gender equality, it’s Esperanto.


So, overall, despite its problems, I believe Esperanto can help us bring a greater degree of justice to the world. I think focusing on its problems is a way of dismissing it out of hand, perhaps out of a sense of guilt that you don’t want to spend energy on learning it. Instead, I encourage you to consider all that Esperanto could do for the world, and join its cause. It could change so much.

Thanks for reading.


Why I’m Learning Esperanto

Practical Uses I’ve Found For Esperanto

How Proteining Is Used To Dominate Conversations

Minor Edits To The English Language

{ 6 comments… add one }

  • Alex Escomu September 2, 2014, 11:50 pm

    Mi ŝategis vian blogaĵon! Nur pri masklismo mi malkonsentas.
    Unue ĉar estus malfacile ŝanĝi tion nun kiam jam ni havas tiom da literaturo… Ni simple pli bone uzu la lingvon… vortoj kiuj finiĝas per ulo, anto, isto, ktp estas ĉiam neŭtraj, sed kelkaj misuzas in-on kaj insistas kiam ne gravas pri ineco: Virino kiu diras: mi estas belulino (nu, mi ja scias ke vi estas ino, mi vidas vin kaj ni delonge parolas).

    Alia afero estas ke ne tiom defaŭlte la malineco estas por familiaj nomoj… ĉar “gefrato” tute ŝanĝas la signifon de la radiko “frat”. Kaj rimarku tiun vorton “malino”, kiun mi ofte vidas (por ekzemple plenumi datumojn por aliĝi al kongreso ofte endas elekti inter ino aŭ malino por priskribi sin) kaj fakte pli indikas apogon al feminismo, multe vidigas Esperanto la inecon per sufikso ol la vireco per ĝia manko. Laŭ mi masklismo precipe ekzistas en mensoj, ne tiom en lingvoj).

    Plue, por specifi malinecon en neŭtraj vortoj endas uzi pli longan esprimon ol por la ina: mi estas vira instruisto; kompare al mi estas instruistino. Mi iel envias tiun in-prefikson, kaj logas min tiu iĉ… sed se iam ĝi oficialiĝus… subite oni devus konscii pri esperantaĵoj ekde la oficialiĝo kaj antaŭ ĝi… oni devos konscii ke en antaŭ-oficialiĝa skriba babilaĵo la vorto patro ne signifus gepatrano sed ja vira patro. Kaj same, endus ŝanĝi defaŭlte inajn nomojn kiel damon, feon, ktp al neŭtraj, ĉu? La vorton putino mi ne ŝatas… prefere amoristo aŭ ĉiesulo (viraj aŭ inaj)

    Via pensaĵo estas inda laŭtlegi kaj eĉ simple tiel enmeti en Youtube. Mi aldonus ke alternativa planlingvo pli justa estus uzi 2 radikojn el ĉiuj 6000 lingvoj tutmonde (aŭ inventi radikojn)… sed problemo ekestus… la tuta mondo devus penegi por lerni tute novajn radikojn, do ne realismas fari tion se eblas faciligi la taskon al duono el la mondo (enigi radikojn en kapon estas la plej peniga afero por planlingvo, imagu se tio okazus). Aldone… laŭ la zagreba metodo necesas lerni malpli ol 500 radikojn por kompreni 95% el ĉiutaga esperantaĵo.

  • Sophia Gubb September 3, 2014, 12:14 am

    Facile direblas tiuj aferoj, kiam vi neniam sentis vin oprimita per seksismo. Sed, mi ne havas energion por diskuti. Se vi estos en JES fine de la jaro en Germanujo mi prezentos metiejon/parolrondon pri feminismo.

  • Alex Escomu September 4, 2014, 12:54 am

    Vi pravas, mi neniam estis virino, tamen al mi tute ne ĝenis ektrovi en aliĝilo la vorton malina kaj elekti tion. Mi malfacile ĉeestos JES-on ĉar estas grava kutimo festi la jarfinon familironde… mi tamen kontrolos. Ha, kaj oprimita per seksismo mi min sentas en Hispanio… ambaŭ seksoj ne egalas leĝe kaj tion mi malŝategas, ke subpremadon de viroj oni nun provas maligi, ne egaligi.

    Tion mi diras ĉar nuntempe en mia lando (kaj pri tio multe scias mia advokata onklino ĉar en urbeto similaj kazaĉoj okazas) ajna virino kiun mi ne konas povus denunci min kaj diri ke mi perforte tuŝis ŝin… aŭ mem perfortis seksume… kaj nur per ŝia diraĵo, sen ajna pruvo, mi irus al malliberejo… kaj estus mia tasko pruvi mian senkulpecon (ĉu la nura leĝa kazo kiam la fama frazo “senkulpa ĝis oni pruvas la malon” tute malĉeestas, eĉ maliĝas).

    Antaŭ kelkaj semajnoj aperis en novaĵoj ke aroj da junuloj sukcesis ne eniri en malliberejon… ili feliĉege (eĉ se fiege) filmis seksumadon kun virino kiu poste dononcis ilin pro perforto. Oni pruvis ke ŝi, post laboro, tute sen-ebria konsentis seksumi kun ili, kaj en la video videblis ke ŝi neniel rifuzis ion ajn… Do vidu!!! viro devas pruvi senkulpecon!! kiom bonŝancaj esti tiom fiaj ke ili filmadis tion!! Ĉu la denoncinto estas idiota ino, ĉu simple demono, ĉu ŝi fine de seksumado ne kontentis kaj decidis denonci por akiri monon el ŝtato… mi tion ne scias… sed en tiuj kazoj, ŝi, pro mensogi jure, devus iri al malliberejo. Alia ekzemplo kiun mia onklino pritraktis, sed ial (ĉu ĉar oni fume akuzas iun pri masklismo?) pri tiuj kazoj nenio aperas interrete, estis pri feliĉa familio kun treege ĉarma kaj bona patro kiuj subite pro fiuliĝo de la patrino estis disŝirita… la patro subite ne plu havis domon sed ja mondevoj kaj la patrino (fine pruviĝis) foriris kun infanoj sufiĉe for de la patra laborloko nur por ke li ne povu viziti ankaŭ siajn infanojn. Kaj pri similaj (eĉ pli gravaj ĉar mi ne ĉion memoras) povus mia onklino rakontadi…

    Alia estas nun “progresema” devigo duonigi ĉiujn postenojn (nur tiuj postulataj de inismaj movadoj, ĉar por esti flegisto, instruisto [kutime pli inaj laboroj ĉar mense inoj pli bonkoras kaj emas helpi kaj alparoli homojn] tio ne efektiviĝas ja) laŭ seksoj… duono el la politika partio estu ina kaj la alia malina. Kaj tiel ne ekzistas samaj ŝancoj por aliri postenon, tute ne, ĉar pli da viroj volas iĝi partianoj ol virinoj, kaj kompreneble simple pro tio statistike vi trovos pli da kompetentuloj inter 100 politikaĉaj viroj ol inter 10 virinoj. Tipe radikala inismano diros: nu, ni devas montri inojn por ke volu politikumi pli da inoj… Prave, sed ne stulte devige, tamen ja instige! enigu kompetentajn inojn, ne iun ajn! kaj por certaj laboroj neniam ekzistos egala proporcio da postulantoj, ĉar viroj kaj virinoj devus egali laŭ ŝancoj kaj rajtoj, sed ja ne egalas laŭ mensoj. Estas pruvite ke viroj pli emas vole akiri pli da respondecoj sed malzorgante tiel iom pri familia tempo, kaj dume virinoj pli emas ne altiĝi en gravaj postenoj por havi pli da libera tempo.

    Mi apogas inismajn antaŭenigojn, sed se ili celas egaligi rajtojn kaj ŝancojn, ne plialtigi por unu flanko kaj malaltigi por aliaj. Espereble en via parolrondo vi mencios ĉi tiajn aferojn.

    Mi malfieregus pri la sistemo se mi (kiu planas iĝi instruisto pri la hispana) estus dungita pro tiu devige sekse duoniga sistemo. Fakto estas ke en studoj pri instuisteco ja ekzistas multe pli da inoj, kaj kompreneble se mi estus la sola viro inter 9 inoj kiu same postulus solan postenon pli probablus ke pli kompetenta ino dungiĝus ol mi… sed laŭ tiu devigo la malkompetenta mi (mi baldaŭ kompetentiĝos per kurso, haha) estus la dungito (nu, ne, ĉar ne kutime ne ekzistas devigo kiam temas pri viroj, tiom justas la mondo).

    Kion mi provas per Esperanto? uzi “ĝi” aŭ “tiu” por anstataŭigi “homon”, “iston” aŭ aliaj vortoj kies sekso ne gravas aŭ ne konatas. Se indas okazigi grandajn ŝanĝojn kiuj subite malnovigus literaturon (kaj pri ekzemple familinomoj indus), tion oni faru post fina venko kaj konsento de akademianoj tiam, sed tujaj reformemuloj havas la mortintan idon disponeblan, por plumortigi ĝin per propraj reformoproponoj.

    Bonvolu klarigeti kian oprimadon pri seksismo vi sentis, mi jam prezentis la miajn sentitajn pri timiga estonteco: ne samaj rajtoj por eks-geedziĝo, seksuma denonco, kaj labora dungiĝo pli in-kutima. Mi scias pri nejusta salajrodiferenco (la nura eta pravigeblo estus ĉar patrinoj dum bebohava periodo ĉesas labori pli longe ol patro, kaj tiel ŝi ne ricevas la salajroaltiĝojn kiuj ricevas la edzon) kio ankoraŭ kutime igas ke gejunuloj kiuj akiras saman postenon ricevas malsamajn salajrojn. Alia afero, kiu se mala aperus en ĉiuj novaĵoj kiel skandala, estas ke oni reklamadas ĉi tie retejon por trovi am-parulon kio nomiĝas adoptuviron.com kie nur virinoj estas la klientoj kiuj aĉetas virojn kiel varojn, laŭ malsimilaj var-ecoj: ursaj, tatuaj, barbaj, ktp… kaj virino devas unue kontakti viron por ke tiu rajtu babili kun ŝi. La retejo uzadas “amuzan” vidpunkton kiu skandalus se viroj estus la klientoj, kaj mi vetas ke se male tiu retejo delonge estus fermita kaj la retejestro monpunita aŭ en malliberejo, sed neeee, tion ĉi oni pravigas pro amuzo, haha, kiom ridige (feliĉe mi legis ke kelkaj inoj plendis)

    Ĉiukaze provu filmi la babilrondon por ke ĉiuj spektu en Youtube poste 😉

  • José Antonio Vergara September 4, 2014, 2:44 am

    Dankon pro via tre pensinstiga artikolo. Mi subtenas la sufikson -iĉ

  • Alessandro Bonfanti September 4, 2014, 9:38 am

    Tre bonan artikolo pri lingva egaleco.

    Mi zelotas por genra reformo en Esperantujo. Igi la tutajn nomojn neŭtra laŭ genro havas laŭ mi du ĉefajn avantaĝojn:

    * Faciligi la uzon de la lingvo (oni pli facile povas memori tion, se nomo estas vira aŭ ina ĉar ĉiuj nomoj estus baze neŭtraj)
    * Malpliigi la seksismon kaj potencialajn kritikojn por disvastiĝo de la lingvo. Mi pensas ke kroman konsideron ni faru. Ni nun scias ke multaj homoj ne volas sin rekoni inter ina aŭ vira sekso kaj la uzo de neŭtraj radikoj povas bone helpi paroli pri tiuj homoj.

    Alia grava temo laŭ mi estas kontinua nova enigo de latinaĵoj nenecesaj. La lingvo jam tro latinindas kaj la radikoj multas do oni ne povas plu enmeti radikojn kian ni povas esprimi kion ni volas diri per ekzistaj radikoj. La fundamenta esperanta estis pli simpla kaj pli egaleca pri tio trajto. Kelkaj vortoj tute ne necesas kaj povas esti substituita per kunmetaĵo de alia radiko. Nur por fari iun ekzemplo: ekvivalenta (samvalora), agrikolturo (terkultivado), biologio (vivscienco), diskoteko (diskejo), domicilo (loĝloko) ktp.
    Daŭri enmeti novajn nenecesajn vortojn vere detruas la celon de Esperanto kaj malfacilegas lernadon al neEŭropanoj.

    Ĉiuokaze mi kredas ke ni ne plu povas ŝanĝi la lingvon artefarite surtable, Esperanto nun estas reala lingvo kun reala vivo, nur esperantistoj ĉiuj povas kune ŝanĝi ĝin. Pro tio mi kredas bezoni disvastigi la konscion de tiaj problemoj kaj kune adopti la ŝanĝojn, kiu povas plibonigi la Esperantan.


    Very good article about linguistic equality.

    I support gender reform in Esperantujo. I think turning the whole names gender neutral could have two main benefits:
    * Facilitate the use of the language (one more easily remember it if the name is male or female because all names would be basically neutral)
    * Decrease the sexism and potential criticism for spread of the language. I think that additional consideration we have to do. We now know that many people do not want to recognize itself between female or male, and the use of neutral roots may well help to talk about these people.

    Another important issue in my opinion is a continuous inserting of useless Latin stuffs. The language as it is, is too filled by Latin elements and the roots abounds so you can no longer put roots if we can express what we mean by existent roots. The fundamental Esperanto was simpler and more equitable about this feature. Some words don’t be necessary and can be easily substituted by a combination of the other roots. Just to do something example: ekvivalenta (samvalora), agrikolturo (terkultivado), biologio (vivscienco), diskoteko (diskejo), domicilo (loĝloko) and so on.
    Continue to put in new unnecessary words really destroys the mission of Esperanto and make very difficult learning to non-Europeans.

    In any case I think we can not change the language artificially on a table, Esperanto is now a real language with real life, only Esperanto speakers can all together change it. For this reason I think we need to spread the awareness of such problems and jointly adopt the changes that can improve Esperanto.

  • Adam ENG September 16, 2014, 12:28 am


    It is a interesting piece of work. I did have the similar thought as yours for the rape etc. But if more people are educated, things are less to be occurred. If women are taught Esperanto, in less than 200 hours, they can communicate with the world and know what is happening.

    For the sexism, Esperanto has no sex discrimination like other languages, for example, bela, is used for both sexes, but handsome is for the male and beautiful is for the female. At the same time, beautiful can be used for flower, cat etc but handsome cannot be used for the flower. As for the male gender, frato, yes, in fact, if you want you can add virfrato, male brother, but most of the people dropped it these days, just like bovo, if you read the old books, they used virbovo,

    Good luck for your good cause. Languages are dying fast. How to protect the dying languages ? A language dies, is a treasure lost.

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