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Introduction:

The definition of Illiteracy: Illiteracy means inability to read and


write.Illiteracy is a curse because it is illiteracy that lowers down human
being to the level of beast.Illiteracy is compared to darkness because it
darkens individuals vision,outlook,behavior and in a word,all aspect of life.It
is the root cause of ignorance,superstition,backwardness,poverty and many
more.

Causes Of Illiteracy: Poverty is the main cause of illiteracy and vice


versa.Similarly,underdevelopment causes illiteracy as much the same way illiteracy
is the cause of underdevelopment.There are other causes too.Over
population,financial and resource constraints.peoples superstition and negative
attitude about education,lack of awareness etc are responsible for illiteracy.
Bad Effect Of Illiteracy: Illiteracy generates hundreds of problems.Because of
illiteracy,people dont know how to earn well and how to spend well.As a result they
can not come out of their poverty trap.Many do not have knowledge about food and
nutrition.So they suffer from various kinds of diseases.In a word,illiteracy is the
cause of poor socio-economic condition,high mortality rate,low life
expectancy,child-labor and child marriage and high growth rate of population.
More knowledges about illiteracy: Functional illiteracy is measured on a scale of
five levels. Level one is an adult or adults who can read a little, but not well enough
to fill out an application, read a food label, or a simple story to a child (NIFL:
National Institute for Literacy- Frequently Asked Questions). Level two adult or
adults can perform more complex tasks such as comparing and contrasting a
situation (NIFL: National Institute for Literacy- Frequently Asked Questions). Level
three to level five adult or adults usually perform the same types of more complex
tasks on increasingly lengthy and dense texts and documents (NIFL: National
Institute for Literacy- Frequently Asked Questions).
Data: According to the A United Way Agency web page posts on-line article entitled
The Scope of Illiteracy in this Country, 23% of adults who were surveyed by the
National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS), were at level one illiteracy. 25%- 28% of the
adults surveyed were at the second lowest level, that is level two (The Scope of
Illiteracy in this Country). This information was released to the public in September

1993, but the survey was complete in 1992 (Literacy Center for the Midlands-Facts
on Illiteracy). This survey measured three areas that included: pose, documentation,
and quantitative proficiency (Literacy Center for the Midlands-Facts on Illiteracy).
Through many studies it has shown that illiteracy has a significant impact on the
economy (Economic Impact of Illiteracy in this Country). The American Council of
Life Insurance reports that three quarters of the Fortune 500 companies provide
some level of remedial training for their workers (Economic Impact of Illiteracy in
this Country). According to Economic Impact of Illiteracy in this Country an online
article reports that a study done by the Northeast Midwest Institute and The Center
for Regional Policy found business losses attribute to basic skills deficiencies run
into the hundreds of millions of dollars. This is due to the low productivity, errors,
and accidents that occur on the job (Economic Impact of Illiteracy in this Country).
Some think that illiteracy may be the cause of many deaths that occur (Illiteracy)
About 30% of 2,659 patients had inadequate comprehension of the written
instructions on the prescription bottles according to an on-line article entitled
Illiteracy. America has many affected areas which illiteracy maybe larger than
anyone may seem to think. In Mississippi, the worst ranked state in America, about
every third person is placed at level one illiteracy (Roberts). Roberts reports in the
state of Michigan that 18% of adults, nearly one in five, were functionally illiterate.
In Detroit, Michigan 47% of its residents scored level one in the National Institute for
Literacy (NIL) Survey (Roberts). The National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL)
will be holding a national survey in the year 2002 (NAAL 2002: Overview). This
survey is an in-person survey that includes an assessment of English-language
literacy skills and a computer assisted interview to collect background information
(NAAL 2002:Overview). Also this survey will measure the ability to use printed or
written materials to perform prose, documentation, and quantitative tasks that
simulate real-life experiences (NAAL 2002: Overview). This survey will compare its
results with the 1992 NAAL survey (NAAL 2002:Overview).
Statistics on Literacy: Today, nearly 17% of the worlds adult population is still not literate; two
thirds of them women, making gender equality even harder to achieve. The scale of illiteracy
among youth also represents an enormous challenge; an estimated 122 million youth globally
are illiterate, of which young women represent 60.7%. The 67.4 million children who are out of
school are likely to encounter great difficulties in the future, as deficient or non-existent basic
education is the root cause of illiteracy. With some 775 million adults lacking minimum literacy
skills, literacy for all thus remains elusive. Although 98% of illiterate people are concentrated in
three key areas: South and West Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the Arab States, developed
nations are also facing a growing illiteracy problem. In the U.S. over 93 million people have
basic or below basic literacy skills. Africa, as a whole continent, has less than a 60% literacy

rate. The list of countries by literacy rate (2016):


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_literacy_rate
Illiteracy And Development: Illiteracy frustrates all developmental programmes of
the government.Again,in order to improve the poor condition of the illiterate
people,govt. has to spend a huge some of money on different programmes.This
affects other sectors and hinders long-term development of the country.
Illiteracy And Human Development: Population of a country is termed as its
human resources.The educated and skilled manpower of a country is its great
asset.But if the people are illiterate,they become a great burden of the
country.Illiteracy people can not contribute much to the social and economical
development of the country.
How To recover Illiteracy: As illiteracy is the root cause of all evils,it should be
the number one agenda of govt.Though govt. has taken various measures like
making primary education free and compulsory,girls education up to higher
secondary level free, and the highest allocation for education in our national
budget,still the measures are inadequate Govt. must ensure that the money is
being utilized properly and effectively.Govt. need to set up
more educationalinstitutions,make reading materials cheap and available and
guarantee employment after completing education.Again private sectors,NGOS
academician and patrons of learning should come forward to spread the light of
education in every house.We have also to make our people aware of the importance
of education.Media can play a great role in this regard.Reducing of poverty is the
most effective way of removing illiteracy from society.So, govt. must work in coordination with others to fight poverty and increase literacy rate.
Conclusion: The present illiteracy rate is still high in our county.That is why we are
lagging behind in all respects than many other nations.If we want to build a happy
and prosperous nation,if we want to stand in honor and dignity among the nations
of the world and if we want to develop ourliving standard and living condition, we
must remove illiteracy from the country.

REFERENCES:

http://www.unesco.org/
http://www.google.com/

http://unesdoc.unesco.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/
NAAL 2002: Overview (PDF File)
How Illiteracy becam a problem (Book)
Hide and Seek: The Search for Illiteracy