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Worldview 6.11.12

Indian children in Allahabad listen to their teacher on International Literacy Day. (AP/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

Monday on Worldview:

We have a special broadcast as part of Front and Center's series on literacy.

First, we look into India's booming book industry. English-writing authors are treated like Bollywood celebrities, complete with lines for autographs and coverage by the paparrazi. But the glamorous book festivals, attended by the likes of Oprah Winfrey, are taking place in a country where more than a quarter of the population is illiterate. Authors Vikram Chandra and Naresh Fernandes, former Editor-in-Chief of Time Out Bombay, fill us in on the state of literacy in India.

Then, in Peru, books are a luxury. People wait for hours to get a book signed, in something that resembles the opening night of a blockbuster film in the United States. Peruvian writer Daniel Alarcon explains what all the fuss is about.

And, Worldview explores how literacy rates have impacted the training of Afghan security forces. In a country estimated to be only 28 percent literate, Afghan soldiers can’t even read ID badges to determine who should be allowed through security checkpoints. Now, the training of Afghan forces includes a literacy component. Heath Druzin, a reporter for Stars and Stripes, tells Worldview about the new program.

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