Esperanto is the world’s most widely spoken constructed language. It was introduced in 1887 by Dr. L.L. Zamenhof of Warsaw, in today’s Poland, to foster international understanding by allowing people with different native languages to communicate as equals. With a vocabulary of international words and a simple yet expressive grammar, it can be learned more easily than other languages.
For over 130 years, Esperanto has maintained a vibrant international community of active speakers. They translate and produce poetry, novels, plays, films, music, games, videos, and other works in the language. Thousands of speakers of all ages and backgrounds enjoy each other’s company in local, national, and international events each year. They also use the language to see the world for free with Pasporta Servo, a travel community with hosts around the world.
Esperanto is not intended to replace any other language and has no official status in any country. It is used as a neutral working language by individuals and by international cultural, political, and educational organizations.
The Internet has been a boon to Esperanto’s popularity, with speakers communicating through social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Major websites such as Google and Wikipedia are available in the language. More than a million people have taken the Esperanto course on Duolingo, the popular language-learning site, since it was launched in 2015.
Aside from Esperanto-USA, there are many other organizations for Esperanto speakers, both here in the United States and around the world. Here are just a few:
- Universala Esperanto-Asocio
- UEA is the largest Esperanto organization, with national member-organizations (like Esperanto-USA) in over seventy nations. Among the many services it provides, UEA hosts an annual Universala Kongreso (World Esperanto Congress), held in a different location around the world each year.
- Esperantic Studies Foundation
- ESF works closely with us to promote opportunities and tools that may help our members in Esperanto studies at home and abroad. The foundation is concerned mostly with promoting Esperanto education, multilingualism, and scholarly studies relating to Esperanto and Interlinguistics.
- Amerika Asocio de Instruistoj de Esperanto
- (American Association for Teachers of Esperanto.) Called AAIE in Esperanto or AATE in English, this organization consists of people across the USA and Canada who teach Esperanto or are interested in teaching the language.
- Usona Esperantista Junularo
- (US Esperanto Youth Group.) Closely connected to Esperanto-USA is USEJ, an organization specifically for young people interested in Esperanto in the USA. If you are 27 or younger and are a member of Esperanto-USA, you are automatically a member of USEJ as well. For more information on becoming involved in USEJ, consider volunteering with us.