Communism in Words

A brief history of Esperanto.

Ludwik Lejzer Zamenhof, creator of Esperanto, sits between two women. Zamenhof, an ophthalmologist by training, devised the language in the early 20th century as a panacea for miscommunication. (Ulstein Bild via Getty Images)

My dad’s love of foreign languages began when he gave up bus conducting and crossed the English Channel to fight Francisco Franco and become a Communist. In Catalonia, a fighter told him that if the International Brigades had known Esperanto, they might have had more success. When someone at a Communist Party school called Esperanto […]

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