In the Land of Invented Languages

Adventures in Linguistic Creativity, Madness, and Genius

Recommended by Lane Greene, and 1 others. See all reviews

Ranked #6 in Linguistics, Ranked #12 in Language

Here is the captivating story of humankind’s enduring quest to build a better language—and overcome the curse of Babel. Just about everyone has heard of Esperanto, which was nothing less than one man’s attempt to bring about world peace by means of linguistic solidarity. And every Star Trek fan knows about Klingon. But few people have heard of Babm, Blissymbolics, Loglan (not to be confused with Lojban), and the nearly nine hundred other invented languages that represent the hard work, high hopes, and full-blown delusions of so many misguided souls over the centuries. With intelligence and... more

Reviews and Recommendations

We've comprehensively compiled reviews of In the Land of Invented Languages from the world's leading experts.

Lane Greene I love this book. People have been inventing languages for hundreds of years. Think of Esperanto, or even the Na’vi language in Avatar. People have been doing this for a really long time and the underlying story – which is a funny, sweet, and sad one – is that many people have felt that existing languages were bad for one reason or another. They fall into two camps. Some people feel their natural language is ambiguous, illogical and messy, so have invented languages because they want to order the world, and force people’s thoughts into order. It draws on that thinking that we talked about... (Source)

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