Thousand Splendid Suns Analysis

Analyse how an extended composed text was structured to establish an essential concept. In the novel A Thousand Splendid Suns composed by Khaled Hosseini, the substantial idea or style that is represented throughout the book is that sexism has terrible effects by negatively affecting the lifestyle lived by “inferior” genders and causes oppression which squashes hope in some individuals and for other people, it produces a requirement to defy and escape this injustice. This is shown to us through the preliminary contrast of qualities in between Mariam and Laila.

Hosseini develops this essential concept through key occasions in the novel such as when Mariam marries Rasheed, Laila marries Rasheed, Tariq’s “resurrection. The novel is structured chronologically to develop this crucial concept. When Mariam is informed that she has a suitor, she is exceptionally shocked and does not wish to be married. However, she is forced into this organized marital relationship since she is an illegitimate child. Her daddy, Jalil who had 3 better halves decided to have sexual intercourse with Mariam’s mother (who was a house cleaner) and resulting in Mariam and her existing invalid status.

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This causes excellent embarassment to Jalil which is reinforced by the quote: “She was being sent away because she was the walking breathing embodiment of their pity.” This reveals that Mariam is undesirable and unloved due to the fact that she is being cast away and has to suffer the effects of her parent’s actions. When she marries Rasheed, she is at very first apprehensive and misses her old life, however then she feels a kinship with Rasheed after understanding he suffered similar sadness and losses that she felt.

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Nevertheless, when Mariam has 7 pregnancies and miscarriages, Rasheed ends up being cold and far-off and increasingly violent towards Mariam. This violent behaviour intensifies and reaches the climax when Mariam cooks rice for Rasheed. Rasheed thinks that the rice is too hard and overreacts by shoving pebbles into her mouth and forcing her to chew them. “He shoved 2 fingers into her mouth and pried it open, then forced the cold hard pebbles into it.” This shocking ruthlessness that Rasheed depicts symbolises the personal oppression that restricts Mariam and squashes her hopes about marital relationship.

Mariam was hoping that the marriage would be something that could lead to contentment and possibly love, however, the marriage actually descends into abuse and oppression because Rasheed believes himself to be superior to Mariam by physically and mentally abusing her which further reinforces my idea that sexism has devastating effects by negatively impacting the quality of life lived by “inferior” genders and causes oppression which crushes hope in some individuals and for other individuals, it creates a need to defy and escape this oppression.

Laila is pressured to marry Rasheed because both her parents were killed and she was told that her best friend and lover, Tariq was also “killed” and Laila is pregnant with Tariq’s baby, which is why she decided to marry Rasheed, not because she loved him but so that the baby could survive. This statement is supported by a quote from the book: “But even though the baby inside her was no bigger than a mulberry, Laila already saw the sacrifices a mother had to make. Virtue was only the first. ” From this quote, we can understand the hardships and difficulties that women had to face in Afghanistan.

Also, Rasheed was the one who set up the person who crushed Laila with Tariq’s death: “And how much had Rasheed paid Abdul Sharif-if that was even his name-to come and crush Laila with the story of Tariq’s death. ” This truly shows the bonds of oppression that Rasheed places on those he considers “inferior” around him and after the story of Tariq’s “death”, Laila’s dreams about Tariq are destroyed and she is extremely distraught and in the forced marriage with Rasheed, she only feels disgust. The abuse and oppression suffered only worsens, when Laila gives birth to a girl which causes Rasheed to despise her more.

Also, after when Laila and Mariam try to escape Rasheed and are caught, this results in Rasheed becoming extremely angry and the beatings, indignities and suffering only gets worse and leads to Rasheed disregarding Laila and Mariam and treating them with disdain which results in Laila losing more hope and suffering until she finally finds out that Tariq is actually alive. This restores her hope and dreams: “another shudder passed through her, a current of something sad and forlorn, but also something eager and recklessly hopeful. This also causes her to start to escape the oppression that Rasheed imprisoned her with.

However, when Rasheed finds out Tariq has visited Laila, he is extremely mad and tries to kill Laila, but he instead he is killed by Mariam who strives to escape this oppression as well: “It occurred to her that this was the first time that she was deciding the course of her own life. ” By breaking free of her own personal oppression, Mariam was able to free Laila from her oppression caused by Rasheed and allowed Laila to live the life she wanted with Tariq.

In conclusion, these examples further reinforce the idea that sexism has devastating effects by negatively impacting the quality of life lived by “inferior” genders and causes oppression which crushes hope in some individuals and for other individuals, it creates a need to defy and escape this oppression because Rasheed was extremely sexist which lead to his oppression of Mariam and Laila who decided to defy and escape this oppression by killing him out of self defence and ending his abusive legacy, they manage to break the chains of oppression and be free. Sexism has devastating effects and causes oppression which crushes hope in some individuals whereas in other individuals, it creates a need to defy and escape this oppression. ” Sexism was also common and was supported throughout society in the novel as Rasheed’s abusive actions and beliefs went unpunished.

We can also see that sexism is reinforced and even encouraged in this society as after the Taliban take over Kabul, they enforce laws that further degrade women and oppress them: “Girls are forbidden from attending school….. Women are forbidden from working. ” From this example, we can see that the Taliban who are in charge think themselves superior to women: “that in the eyes of the Taliban, being a communist and the leader of the dreaded KHAD made Najibullah only slightly more contemptible than a woman. This is truly shocking and reflects upon the despair and hopelessness that women felt during the Taliban regime, because there is no one there to support them; their own husbands treat them with disdain and abuse and the government encourages this which further reinforces my idea that sexism has devastating effects and causes oppression which crushes hope in some individuals whereas in other individuals, it creates a need to defy and escape this oppression.

Another devastating effect caused by sexism was the denial of basic human rights for women. In 1997, Kabul was shrouded by gender apartheid. Majority of hospitals were only for men and had clean water, medications, electricity and equipment. The minority of hospitals for women lacked all these necessities and in the novel, Laila has to give birth to Zalmai, her son without anaesthetics or medication. “The doctor took a breath, then told Laila that the hospital had no anaesthetic. The pain and suffering that Laila has to go through during childbirth truly shows the sacrifices that a mother has to make. “Mariam would always admire Laila for how much time passed before she screamed. ” This event in the novel was caused by the societal mindset that men are better than women and clearly shows the devastating effects of sexism and the pain and suffering that it causes, and has helped me understand that sexism is an outdated and unnecessary type of discrimination in modern society.

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Thousand Splendid Suns Analysis. (2016, Nov 03). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/thousand-splendid-suns-analysis-essay

Thousand Splendid Suns Analysis

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