Esperanto Language Blog

Tadoku: Extensive Reading Contest! Posted by on Jun 30, 2011 in Uncategorized

Have you ever wanted to immerse yourself in Esperanto for longer than an Esperanto conference? Perhaps there are Esperanto books on your shelf that you just never got around to reading? Well, 多読 (Tadoku in Japanese) may just be for you! Now, I bet you’re wondering, what’s Tadoku? Well, leave it to the Japanese to have a word which means extensive reading! Liana’s Extensive Reading Journal explains the three main principles:

  • Don’t look up words in a dictionary.
  • Skip over parts you don’t understand.
  • If you aren’t enjoying one book, toss it aside and get another one.

Tweet ur reads

アンドレ is holding a July contest to see who can read the most in a foreign language. You just register to the Twitter bot telling it which languages you want to read. Let’s say you want to read Esperanto, German and Spanish. Then you’d send the following message on Twitter: @TadokuBot #reg #eo; #de; #es As of this writing, 5 out of the 130 entrants have decided to read Esperanto!

Starting July 1, you send TadokuBot messages with updates of how many pages you’ve read. On his site, you can find the full list of Twitter bot commands. Your usual tweet will probably look something like this: @TadokuBot 24 #eo #book This tells the bot that you’ve read 24 pages in an Esperanto book.

Stuff to read

Fajron Sentas Mi Interne

If you’re looking for something easy, check out the lernu library. There you can click on any word in the text and immediately see the translation appear in the dictionary on the side. I’d also highly recommend the novel Fajron Sentas Mi Interne by Ulrich Matthias, which is about a lonely boy who discovers Esperanto and it opens up an entire new world for him. You can read this book as a website or PDF.

For something a bit more difficult, you could review our series on Esperanto literature. Besides that, the Flandra Esperanto-Ligo has a collection of e-books which you can buy. Just visit their Retbutiko, then click their button labeled La Retbutiko, then you can choose the category E-libroj and browse their offerings.

Free e-books are available at Project Gutenburg which has around 100 books in Esperanto. Their easiest work would probably have to be Karlo by Edmond Privat. I would recommend the following to those looking for more of a challenge: The Wizard of Oz, Robinson Crusoe, Alice in Wonderland, Andersen’s fairy tales and several of Mark Twain’s writings.

In any case, whatever you choose to read, I’m sure will improve your Esperanto. I’d also be interested in hearing your experiences doing the Tadoku challenge as well as which books you plan to read. Since I’ll soon be going to the Internacia Junulara Kongreso in Kiev, I’ll be reading Ĉernobil to learn more about the history of the atomic accident there. What will you be reading?

Update: As of today, you can see the global leaderboard!

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About the Author: Chuck Smith

I was born in the US, but Esperanto has led me all over the world. I started teaching myself Esperanto on a whim in 2001, not knowing how it would change my life. The timing couldn’t have been better; around that same time I discovered Wikipedia in it’s very early stages and launched the Esperanto version. When I decided to backpack through Europe, I found Esperanto speakers to host me. These connections led me to the Esperanto Youth Organization in Rotterdam, where I worked for a year, using Esperanto as my primary language. Though in recent years I’ve moved on to other endeavors like iOS development, I remain deeply engrained in the Esperanto community, and love keeping you informed of the latest news. The best thing that came from learning Esperanto has been the opportunity to connect with fellow speakers around the globe, so feel free to join in the conversation with a comment! I am now the founder and CTO of the social app Amikumu.


  1. Peter (

    I’m one of those who signed up to read in Esperanto. Thanks for the links to those books! I pretty much just had the reader section of my Esperanto book for reading until now.