I tell my students it's not difficult to identify with somebody like yourself somebody next door who looks like you. What's more difficult is to identify with someone you don't see who's very far away who's a different color who eats a different kind of food. When you begin to do that then literature is really performing its wonders.
Well because I have twin seven-year-old boys I enjoy the gift giving stuff a great deal. We do both Hanukkah and Christmas so it is a costly though extremely pleasing proposition.