Esperanto

Please read this article about an international language. The translation from Russian is mine, but the author is not known.

Esperanto the International Language

The project of this international language was published in 1887 by a Warsaw physician named Ludovik Zamenhoff. The project got attention, and soon organizations of people who learned it (esperantists) began to emerge all around the world. At the present time, there are roughly 300,000 people in the world who can speak it (or, from 3 to 10 mln by other estimations). The name of the language comes from the pseudonym that was used to publish the project, Doktoro Esperanto, which means the Hopeful Doctor. Mr Zamenhoff hoped that if people used a single language, which did not belong to any nation, to communicate to other nations, then one of the causes of international hostility would go away.
The structure and vocabulary of Esperanto are simple enough to let a person with no special abilities study it in 3 to 6 months and be able to communicate fluently (to compare, it takes at least 3 to 5 years to achieve while studying a national language). Also, the knowledge of Esperanto makes it easier to study other languages.
The relative simplicity of Esperanto does not make it a defective language: it is very melodious (sounds like Italian), has a great expressive scope which made it possible to translate many world classic works (from Dante and Pushkin to Bulgakov and Tolkien) and create interesting literature written originally in Esperanto. Over 200 books and 300 periodicals are published in Esperanto annualy. There are also online conferences dedicated to Esperanto: soc.culture.esperanto and alt.talk.esperanto, and a subscription list denask-l, dedicated to the discussion of Esperanto as a native language. Some radio stations broadcast in Esperanto.
Ideally, Esperanto is meant to become the second language for everyone worldwide. First, it will let all nations as equals develop their national languages and cultures without being afraid of alien influence and assimilation; second, it will help to achieve better international understanding, because direct contacts in a neutral and easily-learned language can be established not only by the strong or professionals, but also by ordinary people. Therefore, Esperanto is the way to peace, democracy and true internationalism in the wolrd. But even now, when it is a long way yet to the worldwide proliferation of Esperanto, this language gives a lot to the people who know it. No, it will not help you to get rich (though, businessmen who can speak Esperanto, use it in their contacts), but you can take part in an international meeting where thousands of people from different countries gathered, and all communicate without translation! You can exchange visits with people from virtually any country and get to know the life of this country not as a tourist but much deeper from inside. You can read the translations of works which were not translated into English or were poorly translated. You can list tens of opportunities that Esperanto offers, but to understand them better, you should get to know this language closer
Interested? Go to the Open Directory and get some links!

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