Article

‘The Light Cloak of the Saint:’ The Changing Rhetorical Situations of Esperanto’s “Internal Idea" and its Relevance to Contemporary Problems

Author: Alessandra Madella (Kunming College of the Arts)

  • ‘The Light Cloak of the Saint:’ The Changing Rhetorical Situations of Esperanto’s “Internal Idea" and its Relevance to Contemporary  Problems

    Article

    ‘The Light Cloak of the Saint:’ The Changing Rhetorical Situations of Esperanto’s “Internal Idea" and its Relevance to Contemporary Problems

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Abstract

Esperanto was conceived as a model of commercial usefulness, but also to confront the higher aims of its “internal idea.” The interna ideo of Esperanto has historically taken various forms, but it has most often been concerned with protecting a multiethnic world in its diversities, building bridges that allow for a more equitable coexistence of minorities. This underlying ethical thrust makes the international language a potential lever for a more just society in the current global conditions. In order to support this claim, I reconstruct the rhetorical situation of Zamenhof’s pronouncements on the “internal idea,” including Hillelism and Homaranismo. I also argue that George Orwell’s dystopic Newspeak can be considered a political commentary about what would happen to Esperanto if the “internal idea” were to be hijacked in the name of economic progress or the supposed tranquility of commerce.

Keywords: Esperanto, Zamenhof, Hillelism, Homaranismo, Manuel Castells, Network Society, George Orwell, Newspeak.

How to Cite:

Madella, A., (2019) “‘The Light Cloak of the Saint:’ The Changing Rhetorical Situations of Esperanto’s “Internal Idea" and its Relevance to Contemporary Problems”, Poroi 14(2). doi: https://doi.org/10.13008/2151-2957.1278

Rights: Copyright © 2019 Alessandra Madella

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Published on
27 Feb 2019
Peer Reviewed
License
CC BY-NC 4.0