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A Quest For Redemption By The Kite Runner By Khaled Hosseini

1414 words - 6 pages

It is difficult to face anything in the world when you cannot even face your own reality. In his book The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini uses kites to bring out the major themes of the novel in order to create a truly captivating story of a young boy’s quest to redeem his past mistakes. Amir is the narrator and protagonist of the story and throughout the entire novel, he faces enormous guilt following the horrible incident that happened to his closest friend, Hassan. This incident grows on Amir and fuels his quest for redemption, struggling to do whatever it takes to make up for his mistakes. In Hosseini’s novel, kites highlight aspects of Afghanistan’s ethnic caste system and emphasizes the story’s major themes of guilt, redemption and freedom.
Amir and Hassan’s relationship is a recurring theme throughout the novel. In the ethnic caste system, Amir is a Pashtun and Hassan is a Hazara. Pashtuns are placed in a much higher caste than Hazaras, therefore Hazaras are treated as servants to the Pashtuns. Every morning, Hassan prepares Amir’s breakfast, makes his clothes and cleans his room for him. In the annual kite tournament, at least two people must work together in order to properly maneuver the kite, one to lead the kite, and another to feed the kite’s glass string. Hassan’s role is the latter. His role is to feed the kite’s string for Amir and run after any fallen kites. The glass string attached to the kite is dangerous as it is coated with shards of glass and leaves bloody marks and cuts on the hands. Although Hassan catches the fallen kites, he must always bring it back to Amir. One winter, when Hassan and Amir were waiting under a tree for the kite to come to them, Hassan asks Amir “Would I ever lie to you, Amir agha?” (Hosseini 54). Hassan and Amir would always play together just as normal friends would but Hassan never forgot his position in the caste system as a Hazara. He is always loyal to Amir but also treats him like a brother.
Kites play a significant role in Amir and Hassan’s relationship throughout the entire novel. Amir and Hassan spent their childhood together, played, read stories, and flew kites together. Although their relationship may be limited by their different ethnic caste positions, they still managed to find ways to enjoy each other’s company. However, when Hassan gets raped by Assef, Amir does nothing but hide and watch. The incident traumatizes Amir and the guilt he experiences follows him for the rest of his life. If we fast forward closer to the present time of the novel, Amir is informed from Rahim Khan that Sohrab, Hassan’s son, needs to be rescued. Amir feels that it is his responsibility to rescue Sohrab. When Amir gets to where Sohrab is, he sees that Assef is in charge of Sohrab. Assef brutally beats up Amir and upon escaping, Sohrab hits Assef in the eye with his slingshot. The fight between Assef and Amir is pivotal in the novel as it demonstrates Amir standing up for himself. When he sees that Assef has...

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