Here’s a nice video where Lisa Bu describes the importance of books in her development.
She talks about her cross-cultural experience and how books have helped here understand both her original culture and her new culture.
Her talk reminded me of Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s experience. She describes in her book Infidel how growing up in Somalia she managed to read some English books. Although these were basically crappy novels they did open her mind to another culture.
Even within a country and a culture books can do a lot to open children’s minds up to the possibilities of their future life. It is really sad that many homes do little to provide reading material for children. But even disadvantaged children can get access to books through their schools, library and helpful adults outside the family.
Books are important for kids.