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Living on two dollars a day

A new book tells one of the world's most important yet invisible stories: how over two billion people live

By David Goldblatt   September 2009

Above: Micro-credit under discussion at a village meeting in Bangladesh. Photo by Abhilash Medhi, 2009 AP Fellow. Location: Barisal, Bangladesh. Partner: BERDO

Portfolios of the Poor: How the World’s Poor Live on $2 a Day by Daryl Collins, Jonathan Morduch, Stuart Rutherford and Orlanda Ruthven (Princeton University Press)

So far, the economic life of the world’s poor has merely been quantified and aggregated. Some of the texture of everyday life in the world’s favellas has been documented, but what no one has done is to ask those people the pressing questions, “How do you do it?…

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