I was reading a book called Enlightenment and found a sentence that I didn't fully understand. The sentence reads as follows: "How many people are victims of violence as a proportion of the number of people alive?" By "as a proportion of", does the author mean "compared to"? I would be glad if you could help me out.
The author means "divided by." In other words, what is the ratio of victims of violence to world population?
See "proportion," Merriam-Webster, sense 3:
the relation of one part to another or to the whole with respect to magnitude, quantity, or degree : RATIO