Mario Pei: Wanted: A World Language

I have documented Mario Pei's contribution to interlinguistics (i.e. the field of study of the creation and adoption of a universal or international auxiliary language) in English and Esperanto.  Here is another noteworthy contribution to the popularization and advocacy of the idea:

Wanted: A World Language by Mario Pei

Pei's 1969 pamphlet is a condensed argument for the adoption of an international auxiliary language, outlining the history of the idea and the relevant projects, the various options and arguments pro and con, with an exposition of Esperanto, reading list, and directory.

Pei in his 1958 book One Language for the World treated this topic extensively and most comprehensively for the first time in English at least since A Planned Auxiliary Language by Henry Jacob (1947, following Jacob's 1946 On the Choice of a Common Language).

For more on this topic see my web pages:
For an historical overview of the field with links to notable texts see:

International Auxiliary Languages

Note that my web page of Pei's pamphlet contains the corrected, current links to Pei's other works online.

One must not get the impression that Pei was a respected linguist. He was not. He was also a crank conservative, but at least not of the paranoid variety that rejected any manifestation of internationalism. This is probably a result of having to think in international terms in the fight against the Axis powers in World War II. Pei can at least be credited as a popularizer of languages, mutilingualism, and early 20th century linguistics, and as a leading popularizer and advocate of the quest for a universal language.

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