Always Learning!

The world through the prism of my mind

Petitioning United Nations to recognize Esperanto as the international language

Posted by Alexandre Rafalovitch on April 9, 2006

Every couple of years World Esperanto Association (UEA) makes a statement at United Nations to pay more attention to linguistic inequality and (at least a couple of years ago) to consider teaching Esperanto as per UNESCO's recommendation in 1985. Usually nothing happens out of it. UEA is an NGO registered with United Nations, but there are many NGOs and many things they ask for.

Now, I have just discovered that there is an internet petition to United Nations to recognize Esperanto as the international language. Already, more than 4500 people signed.

It would be interesting to see how far it will get and what will come out of it, even if just as an indication of how many people are actively looking out for Esperanto issues.

I have voted, because I think that in some cases Esperanto is a much better option to teach than English. Or at least as an option before English/French/etc.

For example, if a piecekeeping missing is established in an area where natives don't speak English/French/Spanish/etc. and the local language is difficult as well, teaching Esperanto for communication purposes would be much faster and more effective than trying to teach English or even fight for the limited number of interpreters available. At the moment, I believe these situations are treated as effectively unresolvable and the high costs and slow process caused are taken as granted. Esperanto might be just the right outside-the-square solution for this.

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9 Responses to “Petitioning United Nations to recognize Esperanto as the international language”

  1. Anonimulo said

    It seems that this petition was done by an enthusiastic novice of Esperanto.
    Is badly formulated and is useless.
    The UN cannot decide on this matter.
    The UN only can accept proposals from the member countries.

    Sorry for my engrish (I use machine translation to wrote this)

    A good site about esperanto:
    http://www.2-2.se

    Good esperanto music:
    http://webjay.org/by/fajro

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esperanto_in_popular_culture

    Quotes abot esperanto:
    http://www.amuzulo.net/quotes.html

    Tolkien and esperanto:
    http://donh.best.vwh.net/Languages/tolkien1.html

    🙂

  2. I know UN will not accept the petition as it is. But sometimes good things happen because somebody did not know what was impossible. I felt the petition was a good discussion point to bring other issues around. Perhaps somebody will notice how many people actually bothered to sign it and take up the flag to the next level.

    Thank you for your comments and your links. http://www.2-2.se looks particularly interesting and not the site I noticed before.

  3. Anonimulo said

    Ne dankinde!
    😉

  4. Dani Sas said

    I wish Esperanto accepted as an international.

    I believe it’s a shame that such international organizations as the EU and the Un/UNESCO
    won’t try at least testing its capabilities for the use as a bridge or helping tool in the international communication.

  5. Gustavo Luna said

    I believe nowadays the esperanto is the only way to keep the world united.

    It would be nice if everyone could speak a language shared by all of us, in which we could express with absolutely confidence.

  6. To Dani – It _is_ quite a shame. I think the main reason to that is because they all are thinking about it as all or nothing option and neither of the organisations can bear a thought of _choosing_ to translate into yet another language all of its documents; whatever are the benefits.

    To Gustavo – It would be nice for everybody to have a shared second language (Esperanto’s goal). In reality, Esperanto is no longer the only way to connect people from different language and cultures. New advances in computer translations are nearly good enough to do live translation. Esperanto however is the only way to put people onto the _same_ language platform or in political terms, to make them equally disadvantaged. That last issue is actually quite serious for organisations like EU, but obviously not serious enough to actually do something about it.

  7. a name said

    English is already the world language of business, and French is already the world language of culture, and both are already recognized by the UN. Esperanto, despite its positive qualities, is dead in the water as long as at least one world power does not adopt it as its native language (in other words, probably forever).

  8. To ‘A Name’,

    While your position on English/French languages sharing the ‘world language’ pedestal is somewhat true at the moment, there are at least two reasons why this does not mean the death of Esperanto.

    1) This leading position may not stay in its current state for much longer. There are many experts already saying that the next world language may be either Chinese and Hindu. The reasoning is complex, but basically is saying that the switch will happen when business comminity will have a dominant non-English language. And apparently, the switch will then happen very fast (1 generation). French used to be the world language (even in Russia). These things change.

    2) Esperanto does not have to become a world language to be very useful. That’s what my article’s example was about. There are many other examples like that.

  9. FreeXEnon said

    Promote Esperanto via Obama’s Change.org site:

    http://www.change.org/ideas/view/introduce_esperanto_as_a_foreign_language_subject_in_schools

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