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What does it mean to be part of the Esperanto movement?

I actually got to thinking about this, because of the learning the word "kabei". Before that I really hadn't thought about there being an Esperanto movement. I am very curious about what it actually means to be part of the Esperanto movement. Is everyone who learns and uses Esperanto considered to be a part of it? Or is there more to it than that?

August 7, 2018



I'd say anyone who uses the language is part of the movement, but not everyone agrees with that definition.

[deactivated user]

    I agree too. Speaking esperanto is something that bridges cultures because we often reach out to find other speakers. If that isn't being part of the movement I don't know what is.


    I agree with it (upvote!)

    The very act of using an international language says something about the value of the language. To me "movado" and "komunumo" are more or less synonyms.


    This may or may not answer your question, but for what it's worth... A couple of weeks ago I returned home from the Somera Esperanto-Studado in Slovakia, which was my first international Esperanto event. I've been aware that the language has developed it's own culture, but my previous participation in that was very limited. I've learned other languages to a fluent standard before. When you do, you cannot help but learn about the culture(s) in which that language is used. But in each case they are someone else's culture. What I felt was different this time, was that I felt that I had an equal stake in Esperanto culture. I may not have been around for a million years in it, but my stake in it felt like it was no less than anyone else's. I think that's a really special thing about this language, maybe a unique thing.

    Does that make it a movement, or is that participating in the movement? I don't know, but it certainly felt like it was a good thing, and I'd like more of it in my life. So, however you define it, I've no desire to kabei.


    I interpret this as all Esperanto speakers and learners as being a part of the Esperanto movement.


    The canonical definition of the Esperanto movement includes the ultimate goal to make E-o the only language of international communication. A less ambitious definition is about spreading the language, extending it's use and popularity.

    No, not all users of Esperanto do that.

    I am native Russian. Do I participate a Russian movement when I speak Russian? Of course not. I am Latvian citizen. Am I a member of a Latvian movement when I speak Latvian? Same, no. I am speaking Esperanto for 35 years now, but I have no intention of fighting for ultimate triumph of a single language, be it Esperanto or not. So no, I am not in the Esperanto movement in terms of those definitions above.

    I use Esperanto just like I would use any other language: I read things available only in Esperanto--or ones that are best in Esperanto, such as original poetry; I enjoy visiting places and be with my friends, old and new, that I've met in Esperantoland; but that's about all there is in it for me.


    "Canonical" in what sense? (Citation please.)

    If you are saying that the interna ideo is essential to the "Esperanto movement", I would agree - but it's also true that the interna ideo is essential to Esperanto. It is the interna idea, after all. It's part of Esperanto and baked right into it.

    Where I most strongly disagree with your point about this being "canonical" is the suggestion (perhaps indirect) that the interna ideo and finvenkismo are the same thing. The interna ideo is exactly what you describe here:

    I read things available only in Esperanto--or ones that are best in Esperanto, such as original poetry; I enjoy visiting places and be with my friends, old and new, that I've met in Esperantoland;



    Der Endzweck der Verbindung wird erreicht sein, wenn es für jeden Menschen genügend ist, ausser seiner eigenen Sprache nur die neutrale zu kennen...

    The quoted paper is "Regulativ für die internationale Verbindung der Esperantisten", the statute of the very first organization in the Esperanto movement. Don't you think that is canonical enough?

    Vidu ankaŭ la dogmojn de Homaranismo: "Ĉiajn idealojn kaj celadon gente-naciajn mi rigardas nur kiel grupan egoismon kaj hommalamon" kaj "en komunikiĝado kun homoj de alia deveno li devas, kiom ĝi estas ebla, uzadi lingvon neŭtrale-homan".

    It is not that d-ro Esperanto wanted to fully eliminate all humarian languages, but for the movement the main goal from the very beginning was la fina venko, you shouldn't deny that.


    Es ist aber für mich noch nicht klar, daß dieses Zitat als „canonical“ oder universal genommen werden sollte. Die „innere Idee“ war nie so streng ausgedrükt. Homaranismus noch weniger.

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