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A Thousand Splendid Suns By Hosseini A Hosseini

1120 words - 4 pages

The relationship between Laila, Mariam, and Rasheed in Hosseini’s novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns, characterizes powerful motifs that are visible through an analytical standpoint. Themes such as women’s rights and honor play a large part in the history of Afghanistan. In a story as tragic as such, Hosseini helps characterize these themes into vital characters of the story. Along with this, several other motifs of the story are characterized as well. Motifs such as love, hope, and inner strength are all characterized as well, and as Hosseini develops his story further into the plot, we can see further into the motifs themselves, and their significance in the novel, as well as their relation to the real world. Hosseini uses relationships extensively in this novel as well, using them to portray a use of the motif in a very literal way, in order to better organize his thoughts and his “commentary” in regards to each theme through the dialogue of each character. The relationship between Laila, Mariam and Rasheed in the novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns, characterizes the importance of the idea of inner strength, women’s rights, and love, all of which are a powerful motifs throughout the novel.

The motif of women’s rights is one of the largest underlying themes in the book. Heavily shown by Hosseini’s characters, such as Rasheed and the Taliban, this novel shows the type of abuse and neglect women suffered during this time. Men were considered to have complete control of the household, and what went on in the household was the man’s business and outsiders should not interfere, nor should they provide their opinion in any way. This type of mindset, heavily influenced, and sometimes even encouraged, by the Taliban led to the widespread abuse of women across Afghanistan. Along with this the education of woman is severely seen as inappropriate and unnecessary. “Aziza said Kaka Zaman made it a point to teach them something every day, reading and writing most days, sometimes geography, a bit of history or science, something about plants, animals. "’But we have to pull the curtains," Aziza said, "so the Taliban don't see us.’" Kaka Zaman had knitting needles and balls of yarn ready, she said, in case of a Taliban inspection. "’We put the books away and pretend to knit.’"(Hosseini 192) The Taliban “discourage” education, saying, “Girls are forbidden from attending school”(Hosseini 166). In the end of the book, Laila comes back to Kabul to teach, and to give back, signifying a new start for the rights and education of women.

Correspondingly, the relationship between Laila, Mariam, and Rasheed draws several parallels to the motif of women’s rights. Rasheed is an extremely abusive husband, inflicting fear and discipline into his wives in order to have complete control over them. He is an example of the worst of a patriarchal society. Rasheed has no regard for Mariam’s rights, nor does he have respect for her either, even before the Taliban are in control. A...

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