“The Kite Runner” tells us, through Rahkim Khan that, “True redemption is when guilt leads to good again… ” Rahkim Khan states. Throughout the course of The Kite Runner there are many characters that have committed sins and subsequently attempted to redeem themselves. The Kite Runner structured around main characters, Amir and Baba and their acts of betrayal. The impact of these acts continues to be felt throughout the novel manifesting itself in Amirs guilt ridden narrative. However, guilt is not enough.
The need for redemption and atonement is what these characters seek.
“There is away to be good again” the kite runner shows that this is along painful but ultimately positive journey. Amir’s feelings of guilt spring from incidents of betrayal throughout his childhood. Since 1975 when Amir watched as Hassan was raped in an alleyway by Assef, “I ran because I was coward. I was afraid of Assef and what he would do to me” Amir feels guilty for his cowardice s but it was not fear that drove him away the real reason Amir ran was Baba.
Amir was so envious of Baba and Hassan’s friendship that he thought Assef was right. “Maybe Hassan was the price I had to pay the lamb I had to slay to win Baba…. He was just a Hazara wasn’t he? ” This event not only affected Hassan and Amirs friend ship but still made Amir highly jealous of Babas concern for Hassan, ” ‘I haven’t seen much of Hassan in the last few days’ Baba said… I couldn’t help hating the way his brow furrowed with worry” Amir’s selfish personality handy caps his chance to be good again and redeem himself for the past.
Amir places Hassan in the position to be framed and sets him up for theft of Amirs birthday presents, this incident clearly shows that Amir approaches atonement the wrong way.
“I lifted Hassan’s mattress and planted my new watch and a handful of afghani bills under it… then I knocked on babas door and told what I hoped would be the last in a long line of shameful lies. ” Hassan’s loyalty leads to Ali and his departure to grant Amirs wish, “I wanted Baba all to myself” Amir’s actions changed his and Baba’s life forever. Amir has stolen his father’s right to a best friend, his relationship with his hidden son and taken away Ali and Hassan’s job and security within their family. In many respects, Amir’s adult personality is now the direct result of this childhood, feelings of guilt and betrayal.
Amir attempts to redeem himself by planting money in Fahibs family house “I did something I had done 26 years earlier: I planted a fistful of crumpled money under a mattress. ” He also tries to ally his feelings of guilt by taking Sohrab out of Afghanistan and back to America, the way he should have done with Hassan. In All Amirs efforts, he does become a better person once he is situated in America however he doesn’t redeem himself for what he did as a child. Nothing will, “It didn’t make everything all right, it didn’t make everything all right”.
Amir is not all to blame for his insecurity and lack of self-esteem, this personality is the result of Baba’s bad parenting. “If I hadn’t seen the doctor pull him out of my wife with my own eyes, I’d never believe he’s my son. ” Baba is not a supporting father towards Amir or Hassan. Throughout the book, Baba tries to redeem and atone himself for neglecting a secret child. He attempts to achieve this by raising Hassan equality to Amir however by doing this it disallows Baba to be close to Amir as feelings of guilt towards Hassan arise; hence taking the right to a loving family away from Amir and Hassan, for not speaking the truth.
Baba’s betrayal is directed at Ali for sleeping with his wife. “There’s only one sin… and that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft” Baba illustrates his deduction to atone for his actions using his wealth he builds and orphanage for illegitimate or orphaned children. Baba feeds the poor with his ceremonial lamb money. Baba also using his courage and urge to fight for what is right this is evident when he protects the afghani women in chapter ten from the Russian soldier, “… ill take a thousand of his bullets before I let this indecency take place. ” Baba’s decision to abandon home and his country are a evident sign of sacrifice to secure Amir’s long-term welfare and happiness.
His attempts of redemption and atonement to be good again result in his feelings of achievement the day that he dies. “Tonight I am much too happy” If “The Kite Runner” tells us anything it is that redemption is a life long task, through which a person seeks to become “Good Again. ” A person needs to forgive themselves of their sins and absolve them of guilt in order to go on living their lives. Throughout the corse of ‘The kite Runner’, we learn that guilt is not enough. To be good again is more than the journey of redemption and atonement it is the destination.