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An Essay On Orientalism Through Novel The Kite Runner By Khaled Hosseini

1502 words - 6 pages

In this time period many authors have written books that are pieces of propaganda portraying the “Orient” the east to be Orientalist which heightens the risk of hate crimes aimed at people of the east. The author Khaled Hosseini who wrote this novel The Kite Runner tells the story of a man who wants to make up for all the wrongs he did throughout his life. This novel portrays Orientalism. Orientalism is a negative point of view that is to look at the west (Occident) with. This novel The Kite Runner has many characteristics that tell us that this book is portraying an Orientalist view. An example of this would be characters that show themselves as everyday Afghanistani stereotypes. This novel does not only portray stereotypes of the east but it also compares the two countries which are Afghanistan and America in which America is shown as a “Heaven” compared to Afghanistan. To know that this book is an orientalist book there is a type of lens that is called the “Post-Colonial Lens” which was invented by a man named Edward said who refers to the “Orient” as the east and the “Occident” as the west. There are seven orientalist themes/traits that Said had come up with which are: The Barbaric, The Effeminate man, The Erotic, The Exotic, Cultural Stasis, Inability to fight, and Backwardness. In this novel Khaled Hosseini uses orientalism themes to portray the real truth of the Afghan society.

In this novel Khaled Hossseini makes/shows that the characters in his book are orientalist. The best example of an orientalist character in this novel The Kite Runner would be a boy named Amir who is the narrator of this novel and as well as the protagonist. As mentioned before one of the orientalist traits that Amir Shows have is the inability to fight. This novel does not show Amir standing up for anyone else, even if he has the tendency to do so he would always care for himself before others. Amir has a Half-brother named Hassan. He does not stand up for him his own brother when he sees him get raped by Assef (bully) in an alley way. “Runs because he was a coward”. “He is afraid of Assef and what he would do to him”. “I was afraid of getting Hurt” (Hosseini 80). After Amir got what he had wanted he couldn’t bear to see Hassan so he managed a way for Hassan to get thrown out of his house because the fact he could not stand up for him was bothering Amir so much that he was talking to a sleeping man named ( Kaka Homayoun) and on page 91 he and had said” “part of him was hoping someone would wake up and hear, so he wouldn’t have to live with this lie anymore”. This shows that Amir really wanted to help out Hassan but he was too scared to do so. This makes sense because the bully the antagonist in this novel is a ruthless boy named Assef. Assef is just a few years older than Amir and Hassan he is a member of the Taliban (the opposite military occupation in Afghanistan). Assef portrays the trait of “The Barbaric”. Assef is a character who worships Hitler and a...

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