From the pages of Salaam Journal
Forum Senior Member
How to Read: By Marcus Garvey
How to Read
Use every spare minute you have in reading.
If you are going on a journey that would take you an hour carry something with you to read for that hour until you have reached the place.
If you are sitting down waiting for somebody, have something in your pocket to read until the person comes.
Don’t waste time.
Any time you think you have to waste put it in reading something. Carry with you a small pocket dictionary and study words whilst waiting or travelling, or a small pocket volume on some particular subject. Read through at least one book every week separate and distinct from your newspapers and journals. It will mean that at the end of one year you will have read fifty-two different subjects. After five years you will have read over two hundred and fifty books. You may be considered then a well read man or a well read woman and there will be a great difference between you and the person who has not read one book. You will be considered intelligent and the other person be considered ignorant. You and that person therefore will be living in two different worlds; one the world of ignorance and the other the world of intelligence. Never forget that intelligence rules the world and ignorance carries the burden. Therefore, remove yourself as far as possible from ignorance and seek as far as possible to be intelligent.
Your language being English you should study the English language thoroughly. To know the English language thoroughly you ought to be acquainted with Latin, because most of the English words are of Latin origin. It is also advisable that you know the French language because most of the books that you read in English carry Latin and French phrases and words. There is no use reading a page or paragraph of a book or even a sentence without understanding it.
If it has foreign words in it, before you pass over [them] you should go to the dictionary, if you don’t know the meaning and find out the meanin[g]. Never pass over a word without knowing its meaning.The dictionary and the books on word building which can be secured from book sellers will help you greatly.
I know a boy who was ambitious to learn. He hadn’t the opportunity of an early school education because he had to work ten hours a day, but he determined that he would learn and so he took with him to his work place every day a simplified grammar and he would read and me[m]orize passages and the rules of grammar whilst at work. After one year he was almost an expert in the grammar of his language. He knew the differen[t] parts of speech, he could paraphrase, analyse and construct sentences. He also took with him a pocket dictionary and he would write out twenty-five new words with their meanings every day and study these words and their mords [forms?] and their meaning. After one year he had a speaking vocabulary of more than three thousand words. He continued this for several years and when he became a man he had a vocabulary at his command of over fifteen thousand words. He became an author because he could write in his language by having command of words. What he wrote was his experiences and he recorded his experiences in the best words of his language. He was not able to write properly at the same age and so he took with him to work what is called in school a copying book and he practised the copying of letters until he was able to write a very good hand. He naturally became acquainted with literature and so he continued reading extensively. When he died he was one of the greatest scholars the world ever knew. Apply the story to yourself.