3 Reasons Lingua Franca Nova Is The Most LGBT-Inclusive Romlang Yet

Whenever I mention my interest in Lingua Franca Nova, I am inevitably told that it sounds too similar to languages that already exist. While in some senses this is true, I still find, as a queer trans woman, that the areas where it differs from other romance-derived constructed languages (romlangs) are important enough to warrant my interest. Here are some of these differences:

1. It uses the same third-person pronoun, el, for all animate nouns.

While romlangs usually eliminate gender agreement in adjectives, they tend to leave it in place in the pronouns and use a “natural gender” system like English’s. Lingua Franca Nova partly does away with this by merging the masculine and feminine into el while leaving the inanimate pronoun separate. Apart from being LGBT-inclusive, el is also very naturalistic; it is pronounced similarly to French elle as well as Spanish él. There is also a strong rationale for this cross-linguistically, since the majority of languages have no gender distinction in pronouns. For inanimate objects, the pronoun is lo, which forms the basis of the third-person plural pronoun, los.

2. Nouns do not change form for gender.

In Interlingua there is a bit of gender asymmetry in that many nouns end in -o by default, and can mean either “male” or be gender-non-specific, but to make them specifically female you change the -o to -a. Not only that, but there is no way of changing a noun’s form to make it non-binary. In Lingua Franca Nova there are relatively few nouns with inherent gender, and specifying the gender of a noun is analytic like most aspects of the language; you simply add an adjective like fema (female), mas (male), or nonbinaria (non-binary). And on that note…

3. The language is full of official words for LGBT-related concepts.

In addition to nonbinaria there is also ge, lesbian, bisesal, transjenero, asesal, nonsesal, ajenero, and so on. It is, unfortunately, still missing precise official words for certain concepts, notably “pansexual,” “queer,” “polyamorous,” and “aromantic,” but new words are frequently added to the official dictionary, and in the meantime it’s easy enough to derive an LFN word from an international one.

Summary

While LFN could use more words for queer concepts, it is making more official effort in this direction than any other auxiliary language (auxlang) at all, let alone any other romlang. This sets it apart from similar languages, whose governing bodies tend to stop short of active efforts at inclusivity.

Le utilitate de linguas construite

Recentemente un troll esperantista entrava in un canal de IRC re Interlingua pro demandar proque nos parla un lingua inutile. Io replicava que io ha nulle illusiones re un lingua international construite. Etiam si il es possibile, il non es le cosa le plus importante in le mundo moderne. Le activismo debe concentrar se al problemas le plus importante in le mundo, e hodie illo non es le problema linguistic. Il ancora ha homines sin homes in tote le paises del mundo.

Totevia il me place le linguas construite, como Esperanto e Interlingua, pro le opportunitates que illos me da in le vita presente. Per exemplo, distraction ab le problemas plus seriose. Totos ha necessitate de distraction, necuno pote semper molestar se per cosas urgente/practical. E qui semper se applica solmente al cosas practical, derelinque un parte essential del humanitate. Il es practical distraher se, quia il es bon pro le sanitate.

Le esperantistas troppo enthusiastic pensa que le parlantes del majoritate de linguas construite sole valutar iste linguas excessivemente, mais illo non es ver. Nos correctemente valuta nostre linguas, humilemente. Il es iste sorta de esperantista qui valuta su lingua excessivemente.

plus verde / pli verda / greener

plus verde (in Interlingua)

natante in le mar
io quasi me necava
sur terra ambulante
on tentava occider me
si io eligeva le mar
me placeva illo plus

pli verda (en Esperanto)

naĝante enmare
mi preskaŭ dronis
surtere paŝante
oni provis min murdi
do mi elektis la maron
pli plaĉis al mi ĝi

greener (in English)

swimming in the sea
i almost drowned
walking on the earth
they tried to kill me
so i chose the sea
i liked it better

The original Interlingua version of this appeared in Panorama in Interlingua (July-August 2017 issue).

The Lord’s Prayer in multiple conlangs

Rachel Wil Sha Singh

I don’t know why exactly this shows up as a sample translation for many languages (tradition from classic translation practices?), but it is. So let’s show the prayer in multiple conlangs, shall we?

See also, the Reddit thread in /r/Conlangs,
What is the Lord’s Prayer in your conlang?


English

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

Esperanto

Patro nia, kiu estas en la ĉielo,
Via nomo estu sanktigita.
Venu Via regno,
plenumiĝu Via volo,
kiel en la ĉielo, tiel ankaŭ sur la tero.
Nian panon ĉiutagan donu al ni hodiaŭ.
Kaj pardonu al ni niajn ŝuldojn,
kiel ankaŭ ni pardonas al niaj ŝuldantoj.
Kaj ne konduku nin en tenton,
sed liberigu nin de la malbono.

Wikipedia, Comparison between Esperanto and Ido

Ido

Patro nia, qua esas en la cielo,
tua nomo santigesez;
tua regno advenez;
tua volo facesez
quale en la cielo, tale anke sur la tero.
Donez a ni cadie l’omnadiala pano,
e pardonez a ni nia ofensi,
quale anke ni pardonas a nia ofensanti,
e ne duktez ni aden la tento,
ma liberigez ni del malajo.

Wikipedia, Comparison between Esperanto and Ido

Interlingua

Patre nostre, qui es in le celos,
que tu nomine sia sanctificate;
que tu regno veni;
que tu voluntate sia facite
como in le celo, etiam super le terra.

Da nos hodie nostre pan quotidian,
e pardona a nos nostre debitas
como etiam nos los pardona a nostre debitores.
E non induce nos in tentation,
sed libera nos del mal.
Amen.

Wikipedia, Interlingua

Lojban

doi cevrirni .iu noi zvati le do cevzda do’u
fu’e .aicai .e’ecai lo do cmene ru’i censa
.i le do nobli turni be la ter. ku se cfari
.i loi do se djica ba snada mulno vi’e le cevzda .e .a’o la ter.
(.i do nobli turni vi’e le cevzda .ebazake .a’o la ter.)
(.i loi do se djica ba snada mulno vi’e le cevzda .e .a’o la ter.)
.i fu’e .e’o ko dunda ca le cabdei le ri nanba mi’a
.i ko fraxu mi loi ri zu’o palci
.ijo mi fraxu roda poi pacyzu’e xrani mi
.i ko lidne mi fa’anai loi pacyxlu
.i ko sepri’a mi loi palci
(.i .uicai ni’ike loi se turni .e loi vlipa .e loi mi’orselsi’a me le do romei)

Lojban.org

Láadan

Bi’ili,
Thul lenetha Na olimeha.
Wil he’eda zha Natha.
Wil nosha’ad sha Natha lenedi.
Wil sho’o yoth Natha,
Doniha zhe olimeha;
Wil ban Na bal lenethoth lenedi
I wil baneban Na lud lenethoth lenedi
Zhe mebane len luda’ lenethoth lenedi
I wil un ra Na lelneth erabal hedi
Izh wil bo’odan Na leneth rami’ilade
Bro’o sha, sha Natha
I hohathad, hohama Natha
I hohama, hohama Natha
Ril i aril i irilrili
Othe.

From A First Dictionary and Grammar of Láadan, Second Edition, by Suzette Haden Elgin

Toki Pona

Translation by Pijie/Jopi

mama pi mi mute o, sina lon sewi kon.
nimi sina li sewi.
ma sina o kama.
jan o pali e wile sina lon sewi kon en lon ma.
o pana e moku pi tenpo suno ni tawa mi mute.
o weka e pali ike mi. sama la mi weka e pali ike pi jan ante.
o lawa ala e mi tawa ike.
o lawa e mi tan ike.
tenpo ali la sina jo e ma e wawa e pona.
Amen.

Wikipedia, Toki Pona

Volapük

1930 de Jong Volapük

O Fat obas, kel binol in süls!
Nem olik pasalüdükonöd!
Regän ola kömonöd!
Vil olik jenonöd, äsä in sül, i su tal!
Givolös obes adelo bodi aldelik obsik!
E pardolös obes döbotis obsik,
äsä i obs pardobs utanes, kels edöbons kol obs.
E no blufodolös obis,
ab livükolös obis de bad!
(Ibä dutons lü ol regän, e nämäd e glor jü ün laidüp.)
So binosös!

Wikipedia, Volapük