Washington Post might be interested in hearing about classes in IALs (Ido, Interlingua, Esperanto, etc.)

Monday, November 24, 2008

De Wikipedia: El Arena Santiago, Chile. La raíz del término se remonta a las épocas del Imperio Romano, en donde los gladiadores luchaban en una superficie cubierta por arena.

Here's an article today on a course on etymology, the "First in a series of occasional short takes on unusual courses in local schools."

One part of the article:
"Kids see a word that to them is foreign, and they run away from it," Rosenthal says. He started the class with a group of other Loudoun County teachers in 1990, and it remains one of the few of its kind in the country.

On a day focused on Latin words including arena and sinister, Rosenthal talked about the twists words take as they make their way into English.

Arena, for example, means "a sandy place" in Latin. Sand was scattered in the center of Roman stadiums where gladiators fought. Sinister derives from Latin for "left," with the implication that lefties were suspicious.
Assuming they want to focus on the United States though, Esperanto is probably the only IAL that would be able to show a reporter an example of a course that has been going on for quite some time. Interlingua has that course at the University of Granada that has continued for a number of years, but within the US Interlingua and Ido are only learned by individuals on their own.

I'll still contact the reporter (Nick Anderson) though anyway. Any reporter willing to do a piece on etymology alone might be interested in other equally esoteric subjects. Others should contact him too and perhaps we'll be able to get something on IALs to appear in the Washington Post.


Remush said...

Thanks for the information.
See http://remush.be/etimo/etimo.html
(with translations in Esperanto)

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, but I really have difficulty in seeing the point of putting all these IAL's you mention into the same class, or league, as Esperanto. Why would the Washington Post have the slightest interest in arcane, quasi-theoretical IALs, as opposed to one which is actually in daily, practical use in countries around the globe and on-line, and indeed spoken by 70%, or more, of those interested in IALs? The supposed linguistic superiority of the 'co-contenders' has absolutely nothing to do with the (non-)acceptance of the idea of 'universal bilingualism'. It just confuses the general public. Or is that in fact the general purpose?
True, all IALs might have some value as far as etymology goes, but practical usefuleness is a totally different affair - and the supposed number of users of Ido and Interlingua is truly picayune when compared to Esperanto.

Me said...


Very true, you do have difficulty in seeing the point. Let me explain:

La manko di suceso di Esperanto havas nula relato kun la altra lingui Ido, Interlingua, edc. Vua, e nia enemiko esas la manko di intereso di ordinara homi.

Time to get over the presence of other IALs - they've been there before Espo and aren't going anywhere. Thanks for reminding me though why I've never been that interested in Espo - the nose-in-the-air attitude about other IALs that many have is really just another form of linguistic discrimination that I'm happy not to be a part of.

On the other hand, Remush's link is very impressive. That's the kind of thing that motivates people to join one's linguistic movement. Take note of that.

Steve said...

The problem with mezzofanti's argument (apart from attitude) is that it makes much the same judgment about other IALs as the world in general makes about Esperanto: "arcane, quasi-theoretical." Esperanto is indeed the most popular of IALs, but Ido and Interlingua are being used, and there are people who use them who evidently know and would rather not use Esperanto.

There are a lot of people who will probably never learn Esperanto, because rightly or wrongly they perceive it as being too hard. Some of these people may be willing to learn Ido, Interlingua, or something else, and all such steps should be considered useful to the auxlang idea.

On the other, other hand, it's also counter-productive all around to tout "superiority." I've looked at the various systems, and none of them is generally "best," which throws the whole question into the realm of subjective judgment. For some people, Ido is best; for others, Esperanto; and so on.

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