Humanist Book Group: Factfulness

This is a past event

18 people went

San Francisco Public Library

100 Larkin Street · San Francisco, CA

How to find us

We will be in the Stong room on the ground floor

Location image of event venue


NOTE: This is the *third* Saturday this month!
Join us in the Stong room as we discuss "Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World - and Why Things Are Better Than You Think" by Hans Rosling. Newcomers are always welcome, as are new book suggestions.

We will be selecting the next book from those presented in person at this meeting. If you'd like to add a book to the running, come ready to make a short pitch for it and bring a copy if you can. We will want to know the page count of the book and whether it is available in the SF Public Library.

About "Factfulness" (SFPL:

"When asked simple questions about global trends -- what percentage of the world's population live in poverty; why the world's population is increasing; how many girls finish school -- we systematically get the answers wrong. So wrong that a chimpanzee choosing answers at random will consistently outguess teachers, journalists, Nobel laureates, and investment bankers. Professor and TED presenter Hans Rosling, together with his two long-time collaborators, Anna and Ola, offers a radical explanation of why this happens. They reveal the ten instincts that distort our perspective, from our tendency to divide the world into two camps (usually some version of us and them) to the way we consume media (where fear rules) to how we perceive progress (believing that most things are getting worse). Our problem is that we don't know what we don't know, and even our guesses are informed by unconscious and predictable biases. It turns out that the world, for all its imperfections, is in a much better state than we might think. That doesn't mean there aren't real concerns. But when we worry about everything all the time instead of embracing a worldview based on facts, we can lose our ability to focus on the things that threaten us most. "

If you have not read the book, you're welcome to attend and learn what we're about. We only ask that you allow those who have done the reading to speak first. If you can't finish the book in time, reading part of it or even watching a talk by the author can help make the discussion more interesting.

We typically go to dinner together afterward at a nearby restaurant, for those who would like to stick around.

A list of past suggestions can be found at

This is not a Library Sponsored Program.