The Kite Runner Literary Analysis

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The Kite Runner Analysis
The expression "riddled with guilt" is a good way to describe the main character's life, Amir, in the book The Kite Runner, written by Khaled Hosseini. The Kite Runner is a story about an Afghan boy, Amir, who has many hardships throughout his life as he grows from a boy living in war-torn Afghanistan, to a successful writer living in America. Amir experiences many events that caused him to carry a great amount of guilt throughout his life. So much guilt that it even turned him into an insomniac. He needed to find a way to make amends which would allow him to forgive himself and hopefully, one day, be able to sleep soundly again.

Guilt was a main theme that occurred over and over again throughout the story. Amir can trace his feelings of guilt back to the moment he was born since his mother died during childbirth and Amir thinks his father blamed him. Amir often felt he let his father down. He said, "I will never forget Baba's valiant efforts to conceal the disgusted look on his face." (pg. 21) That was his father's reaction to his crying after seeing a horseback rider trampled to death. Also when Amir overheard his father say, "There is something missing in that boy" (pg. 22) and "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." (pg. 23) he knew that he did not meet his father's expectations. Amir clearly felt that he was not measuring up to his father's standards of what boy (or man) should be like. But Amir really wanted his father's approval.

Not only did Amir feel guilt from not meeting his father's expectations, he felt tremendous guilt when he didn't tell anyone and didn't do anything to help his friend Hassan when he witnessed Hassan being raped. Especially because it happened when Hassan was running after Amir's victory kite. What made this guilt feel so much worse was that Hassan had always been so good and loyal to him. Once, Hassan even defended Amir...
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