‘In the Kite Runner, the personal and the political are always linked.’
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini explores issues of both personal, meaning individual experience, and political (relating to the government or public affairs of a country) issues, along with the majority of political and social protest writing. However, it can be debated as to whether these issues are always linked or not, meaning that they are connected with one another at all times. In some ways, this is suggested as the book primarily explores the rise of the Taliban and the impact of this onto personal lives. However, it is possible to argue that the personal and political issues raised in this novel are always linked, as they are often discussed separately from one another.
On the one hand, it is possible to argue that the treatment of Hassan by Amir and Hazaras as a whole by the Pashtuns do support the statement that the personal and political are always linked. Hosseini makes the poor treatment of Hazaras a significant issue in The Kite Runner as he mentions the massacre in Mazar-i-Sharif from 1997-1998. Hosseini writes, from the perspective of a member of the Taliban, “Door to door we went […] We’d shoot them right there in front of their families”. Through saying that they went “Door to door” highlights that this is a problem on a large and therefore political scale, emphasising that they have no mercy concerning who they kill, as long as it was a Hazara. Moreover, the use of the word “right” suggests that there is an absence of morals in this massacre in particular, showing the political problem that persists in Afghanistan society. Therefore, this explicit language evident in this quote supports the fact that the personal and the political are always linked as the poor treatment of Hassan by Amir also links to the poor treatment of Hazaras in general by the Pashtuns in Afghanistan.
However, it is also possible to argue that the personal and political are not always linked as Amir’s fight to personally accept Sohrab as an individual rather than just on the basis of his ethnicity. Amir says, “You will never again refer to him as ‘Hazara boy’ in my presence” which not only highlights the personal development of character for Amir but it also shows his strong opposition to ethnic divisions. The use of the definitive word “will” emphasises the strength of character Amir has gained and also his personal struggle to accept the neutrality of humans. That is, without the restrictions of ethnic statuses. As a result, personal and political...