I find it difficult to really connect with statistics on world poverty, literacy, and economics. Human stories are compelling, but don’t give an idea of scale. That’s why I think the little book If the World Were a Village, by David J. Smith, is so clever in bringing the figures to life. As the back cover says, if the world were a village of just 100 people (rather than 6 billion) then:
- 22 people speak a Chinese dialect
- 20 earn less than 65p a day
- 17 cannot read or write
- only 30 always have enough to eat
- 25 have a television in their homes
I can understand that, and so it seems can many others, because about one million copies of the book have sold, with 18 foreign language editions.