Dedicated to the true and loyal members of the Universal Negro Improvement Association in the cause of African redemption.
This volume is compiled from the speeches and articles delivered and written by Marcus Garvey from time to time.
My purpose for compiling same primarily, was not for publication, but rather to keep as a personal record of the opinions and sayings of my husband during his career as the leader of that portion of the human family known as the Negro race. However, on second thought, I decided to publish this volume in order to give to the public an opportunity of studying and forming an opinion of him; not from inflated and misleading newspaper and magazine articles, but from expressions of thoughts enunciated by him in defense of his oppressed and struggling race; so that by his own words he may be judged, and Negroes the world over may be informed and inspired, for truth, brought to light, forces conviction, and a state of conviction inspires action. The history of contact between the white and Black races for the last three hundred years or more, records only a series of pillages, wholesale murders, atrocious brutalities, industrial exploitation, disfranchisement of the one on the other; the strong against the weak; but the sun of evolution is gradually rising, shedding its light between the clouds of misery and oppression, and quickening and animating to racial consciousness and eventual national independence Black men and women the world over.
It is human, therefore, that few of us within the Negro race can comprehend this transcendent period. We all suffer in a more or less degree; we all feel this awakened spirit of true manhood and womanhood; but it is given to few the vision of leadership; it is an inspiration; it is a quality born in man. Therefore in the course of leadership it is natural that one should meet opposition because of ignorance, lack of knowledge and sympathy of the opposition in understanding fully the spirit of leadership.
With the dawn of this new era, which precedes the day of national independence for Negroes, it is well for all members of the race to understand their leadership; know what its essentials, its principles are, and help it to attain its goal and liberate a race in the truest sense of the word.
In Chapter 1 of this volume I have endeavored to place before my reader’s gems of expression convincing in their truths. Chapter 2 deals with definitions and expositions of various interesting themes. Chapters 3 and 4 contain a collection of brief essays on subjects affecting world conditions generally and Negroes in particular. In Chapter 5 I have reproduced what I consider two of the best speeches of my husband. It is my sincere hope and desire that this small volume will help to disseminate among the members of my race everywhere the true knowledge of their past history, the struggles and strivings of the present leadership, and the glorious future of national independence in a free and redeemed Africa, achieved through organized purpose and organized action.
New York City
February, 23, 1923
Originally published in the 1920s, this is the standard edition of the black leader's writings.