During the late 70s early 80s there was a strong disagreement between races in Afghanistan. In particular the Pashtun and the Hazarah. Two forms of the same religion but with only 1 difference. The Pashtun were higher up in the community than the Hazarah. The Pashtun were considered clean and fit to rule because they were primarily of pure descent unlike the Hazarah (Pashtun encyclopedia Britannica page 2). The Hazarah were looked down upon because they are usually of mixed families and were considered below the Pashtun (joshuaproject. net page 1-3).
?As the higher ups the Pashtun were wealthier and had more friends in the higher up chain of command in the Afghani government. They had servants who were normally Hazarah. The Hazarah were lower in class and used their labor to make a living by becoming servants to the Pashtun. Like Hassan was to Amir and Baba. ?Amir the main character and novel narrator is of the Pashtun religion and because of this he is accustomed to having the things he wants handed to him on a silver platter. The only things Amir feels deprived of is a deep connection both emotionally and figuratively with his father Baba.
He blames it on himself because he is so different than Baba in so many ways. He also feels responsible for the death of his mother who died during Amir’s birth (muse. jhu. edu page 1-5) ? Hassan who is Amir’s best friend is of the Hazarah religion and is a lower class than Amir and the Pashtun. Amir overlooks this fact and is a loyal friend to Hassan until Hassan gets raped and Amir didn’t do anything to stop it or help him. After Hassan gets raped something changed in Amir. He began to feel guilty and his guilt began eating away at him. He became a total jerk to Hassan and Hassan had no idea why (Hazara encyclopedia Britannica page 1-3).
?Some of Amir’s guilt is directed towards Hassan who receives Baba’s affection instead of Amir. Amir feels that Hassan (a Hazarah and one of his family’s servants) is beneath him and shouldn’t be getting Baba’s affection as much as he is. ?Baba sees Amir as a coward when he is a boy. Amir lets Hassan fight all his battles for him which is why in my opinion Hassan gets more of the affection from Baba. Baba wishes that Amir would learn to fight his own battles from Hassan and ultimately grow a backbone and become more of a man that Baba wants him to become.
Although its hard to see in some parts of the novel, religion is always present. Whether it be the beginning of the novel where Amir and Hassan are flying kites or it be at the middle where Amir and Baba are traveling to America. Once in America Baba and Amir began to bond more and ultimately become as close as they wanted to be for a very long time. Baba falls ill after Amir graduates from college. Baba’s last great act before his death is he (on Amir’s behalf) asks for an Afghani general’s daughter’s hand in marriage. Amir then marries her right before Baba’s death.
After Baba’s death Amir focuses on his writing the stories he came up with. Once his first novel gets published he gets a call from Baba’s friend back in Afghanistan and he asks Amir to come back to the land of his childhood and take care of him. Amir agrees and travels back to Afghanistan (the kite runner page 194). Once back he meets Baba’s friend and he learns that Hassan wrote him a letter shortly before his murder at the hands of the Taliban. Amir learns that Hassan was actually his brother and that Hassan had a son that got sent away to an orphanage after his murder and it became Amir’s duty to go and find Hassan’s son.
?As Amir takes on the challenge of tracking down Hassan’s son he travels all over Afghanistan until he finally finds where the boy is. Amir talks to the man who took Hassan’s son and saw that he was using the boy for his own entertainment by attaching bells to his hands and feet and made him dance. (the kite runner page 278) The reason why the man is making Hassan’s son dance it to assert his authority and put the Hazarah boy in his place below the man who now is his guardian before Amir gets ahold of him (Hazarah encyclopedia Britannica page 1).
Courtney from Study Moose
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