NPR | January 8, 2021
But the very term “Third World” is a problem.
“I feel like it connotes this superiority and inferiority,” says Ngozi Erondu, senior scholar at the O’Neill Institute at Georgetown University, who identifies as Nigerian American and says half her family lives in Nigeria. When she heard the label growing up, she says it struck her as making “this assumption about people outside of the ‘First World’ — that they lived really different lives, the assumption they were poor, they should be happy to eat every day. As if we don’t have the same value as humans.”
She concludes: “I think it’s a very antiquated and offensive term.”