The World in Words 62: Esperanto, Klingon, Blissymbolics and 900 others: why we invent languages

This week, a conversation with Arika Okrent, author of "In the Land of Invented Languages: Esperanto Rock Stars, Klingon Poets, Loglan Lovers and the Mad Dreamers Who Tried to Build a Perfect Language." Okrent, herself a linguist, tells the stories of people who dreamed up languages that would replace our own bastard tongues. She also submerges herself, Orwell-style, into the geeky world of invented language societies. The vast majority of invented languages from Lingua Ignota (c.1150) to Dritok (2007) have completely failed to take off. But they tell us much about how we think, how we do not think, and how we love to blame language for our own shortcomings.

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