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>From:    James Chandler <[log in to unmask]>
>Subject: Re: -uj in Esp
>
>Chris rote:
> >In principle I agree with you, but it's not 1880 anymore. It's very late in
> >the history of the IAL movement to tear everything down and start again. Eo
> >compels the attention of anyone interested in IALs because of its relative
> >success and, more importantly, because of the resources at its disposal.
> >Despite 'kiuj', '-ajn', C^, 'edzo', and a number of other things that
> >should never have seen the light of day.
>
>This is where people like me and, it should be mentioned, Bruce Gilson,
>would strongly disagree with your approach.  Altho i admit we have to take
>into account what has been proposed up till now, and especially what has
>enjoyed some degree of popularity and use (Esp, Ido, Ia etc.), i dont see
>any reason to be bound by the decisions of former language designers like
>Zamenhof, or even more expert ones like Jespersen.

I suspect that what was meant by "resources" is the 100+ years of
literature that Esperantists have written.  Given that Esperantists seem to
like to write and translate literature a lot, the Esperanto literature
seems to be very large relative to its speaker base (however many that is);
many languages with 10 times the number of speakers have less written and
translated literature.

Certainly if you are going to start over and design a new conlang/auxlang,
there is no reason to be bound by old decisions for other languages.   But
such a new language may take 100 years in order to have as much to read IN
the language as Esperanto already has.  This is a gap not easily
overcome.  One of the problems we have with Lojban is just this - while a
few people are writing a lot of stuff in Lojban, only one person has
literary pretensions (and his is a poetic style that does not appeal to a
lot of people), so there isn't that much well-written and interesting stuff
to read, especially not stuff that isn't easy to find in English.  I think
that Don H and others have made the case to me that this is not true of
Esperanto.

>It may not be 1880 any more, and that may mean that the IAL movement has
>lost some of its innocence and naivety; but with fifty years having passed
>since the last heyday of the movement (the publishing of Interglossa and
>Interlingua were the last real milestones in its history), we are also
>afforded a unique opportunity to take stock of what we currently have, and
>to start to distinguish what works from what doesnt, and collect up the good
>bits from each project.  On this view, it would seem like a wasted
>opportunity to allow ourselves be tied down to what designers of the past,
>some of who didnt have the benefit of many past efforts to guide them in
>their selections.

This argument only has validity if you are designing something new, whereas
"resources" is inherently an argument for using what you presently have to
best advantage.

lojbab
----
lojbab                                             [log in to unmask]
Bob LeChevalier, President, The Logical Language Group, Inc.
2904 Beau Lane, Fairfax VA 22031-1303 USA                    703-385-0273
Artificial language Loglan/Lojban:  http://www.lojban.org (newly updated!)