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Essays on The Kite Runner

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A Redemption Journey in "The Kite Runner"

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The Importance of Betrayal and Loyalty in "The Kite Runner"

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The Theme of Maturity in "The Kite Runner" by Khaled Hosseini

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May 29, 2003, Khaled Hosseini

Novel; Bildungsroman, Drama, Historical Fiction, Coming-of-age Drama

Assef, Rahim Khan, Sanaubar, Soraya, General Taheri, Sohrab, Amir, Hassan, Khala, Baba, Farid, Farzana, Ali

The story has been based on Khaled Hosseini life in Afghanistan before he left for the United States.

Father-son relationship, courage, friendship, childhood, change of regimes, guilt and redemption

The Kite Runner is a challenging book to read since it speaks of guilt and redemption, true friendship, and the changes that a person is going through decades later. Most importantly, it is the run of events that run from the fall of Afghanistan's monarch to the refugees era, and the Taliban regime. The red line is the friendship and the way how human relationships change. It has a complex setting through the decades when the main protagonist Amir, a young boy, is telling about his life, his relationship with Hassan and the events that he could not prevent.

The Kite Runner is a story of Amir and his father who are living in Kabul, Afghanistan. They belong to a major ethnic group called Pashtuns. Amir's best friend is called Hassan who lives with his father, yet they belong to a minor ethnic group called Hazaras. Even though the boys belong to different groups, they are the best friends. As the events unfold, Amir is unable to rescue Hassan from a tragedy that takes place due to lack of courage, which is his guilt years later. As Amir grows up, he moves to the United States where he learns that his friend's (Hassan) son is in the orphanage. Saving the boy with his wife, Amir finds redemption.

According to the author, the book became so popular because it "connects with them in a personal way, no matter what their own upbringing and background" are. The book became the best seller at The New York Times for more than two years. It is believed that the September 11 tragedy has contributed to the novel's admiration in the United States since it has allowed people to see the Afghan culture. The story has also been inspired by the news story about Taliban's banning the kite flying in the country, which has inspired Khail Hosseini for the title and some parts of the story. The short version of the book has been rejected by some publishing houses. The Kite Runner is the first English publication written by the Afghan author. The author did not return to his home country Afghanistan until the time when the book was published. Hosseini believes that his novel is a love story because love is the main protagonist.

“For you, a thousand times over” “It may be unfair, but what happens in a few days, sometimes even a single day, can change the course of a whole lifetime...” “There is only one sin. and that is theft... when you tell a lie, you steal someone's right to the truth.” “When you kill a man, you steal a life. You steal his wife's right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone's right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness.” “I opened my mouth, almost said something. Almost. The rest of my life might have turned out differently if I had. But I didn’t.”

This book became an important example of friendship and living with the guilt that took place as the lack of courage and being brave. As the multi-generational story, it deals with many sides of culture, family life, human relationship, discovering different cultures, and staying true to who you are. The author shows the way Amir grows and how he finally finds his self-identity that he has been seeking so long.

The book, according to the author, is about seeking love and finding it in everything, about friendship, about looking back, and finding redemption and one’s self-identity. While this novel is quite challenging and might even bring up tears while reading, it serves the role of a powerful story about being sincere and earning trust. One can write an essay about it by focusing on cultural, social, or even political aspects as the book runs from the 1970s to 2002.

1. Aubry, T. (2009). Afghanistan meets the amazon: reading the kite runner in America. PMLA, 124(1), 25-43. (https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/pmla/article/abs/afghanistan-meets-the-amazon-reading-the-kite-runner-in-america/2D11194B0891CCB91EABAEB5E6BD865D) 2. Jefferess, D. (2009). To be good (again): The Kite Runner as allegory of global ethics. Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 45(4), 389-400. (https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17449850903273572) 3. O'Brien, S. (2018). Translating Trauma in Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner. Transnational Literature, 10(2), 1-A5. (https://www.proquest.com/openview/5202ba584abd167130cae69acbe52985/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=1596384) 4. Jocius, R. (2013). Exploring adolescents’ multimodal responses to The Kite Runner: Understanding how students use digital media for academic purposes. Journal of Media Literacy Education, 5(1), 4. (https://digitalcommons.uri.edu/jmle/vol5/iss1/4/) 5. Kai-fu, C. (2019). A Study of Amir's Psychological Change in" The Kite Runner". English Language Teaching, 12(5), 190-193. (https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1214311) 6. Du, J. (2017). A journey of self-actualization of Amir in The Kite Runner. English Language and Literature Studies, 7(3), 90-93. (https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/9c07/8bb1388903fab1fe437f604fb6c0a15299a6.pdf) 7. Ghafoor, S., & Farooq, U. (2020). Can subaltern be heard: an analysis of the kite runner and the thousand splendid suns by Khalid Hosseini: can subaltern be heard. International Review of Literary Studies, 2(1), 29-38. (http://irlsjournal.com/ojs/index.php/irls/article/view/10) 8. Hunt, S. (2009). Can the West Read? Western Readers, Orientalist Stereotypes, and the Sensational Response to The Kite Runner. (https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/129489717.pdf) 9. Adhikary, R. P. (2021). Crisis of Cultural Identity in Khaled Hosseini‘s The Kite Runner. Scholar Journal of Arts, Humanities and Social Science, 5, 179-187. (https://saspublishers.com/media/articles/SJAHSS_95_179-187.pdf)

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