Where Did the Phrase "it Takes a Whole Village to Raise a Child" Originate?

The phrase "it takes a whole village to raise a child" is a Nigerian proverb that appears in many different forms in African languages. The central meaning of the phrase is that bringing up children requires the effort of an entire community.

While the proverb originated in Africa, the ideas that it expresses resonate across the world. In the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes, verses 9 and 12 of Chapter 4 express the importance of collaboration in raising a family. When Hillary Clinton was first lady of the United States, she published a book about family values titled "It Takes a Village."