Do we know what poverty is?

The poor may always have been with us, but attitudes towards them have changed. Beginning in the Neolithic Age, Ben Lewis’s film takes us through the changing world of poverty. You go to sleep, you dream, you become poor through the ages. And when you awake, what can you say about poverty now? There are still very poor people, to be sure, but the new poverty has more to do with inequality…

Directed by Ben Lewis. Produced by Femke Volting & Bruno Felix.                                       Production company: Submarine. Running time: 58.05 min 


“You are falling asleep. You are going to have a dream. It starts with this thought ‘If we want to make poverty history, then first, we need to understand the history of poverty.‘” So starts Ben Lewis’ funny and sinister animated odyssey through time, reviewing human need from hunter-gatherer food insecurity through to today’s capitalist meltdown. But what does history tell us? Is there an answer? “What can we do for them or what do they need?” asks Esther Duflo, Director of Poverty Action Lab, “That’s a question which is a little too general in a sense because there is no one answer.”