Hans Rosling’s video has been making the rounds (at least among my friends, who keep sending me the link). While it is visually stunning, the story he tells of the steady progress of income and health is dubious—for at least 2 reasons:
1. He mentions, but spends very little time discussing, the inequality of health outcomes within countries. It’s the problem of per capita income and average health indicators without taking into account their distribution.
2. He overlooks entirely periods when incomes rose but health worsened. See, for example, the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain.