Throughout Chapter 22, Hosseini shows the themes of violence and tension. This is achieved by Amir and Assef meeting in Afghanistan in Chapter 22.
The theme of tension is portrayed through the use of reminiscence, ‘His name rose from the deep and I didn’t want to say it, as if uttering it might conjure him.’ Through the metaphor, ‘his name rose from the deep’ adds tension to the story because it describes how Assef would move toward Amir. The use of the adjective ‘deep’ portrays Amir’s’ past as it locked into Amir as he wishes to forget about it, in despite hopes that it will go away, when actually it stays with him, haunting him every day. This is because he regrets not helping Hassan from Assef in the alley, in Chapter seven. Due to the fact that Hosseini ensures that Amir does not speak Assef’s name and only refers to him as ‘his’ therefore showing that Amir does not wish to remember Assef – or what he did to Hassan in the alley. Also through the use of the verb ‘conjure,’ Hosseini indicates to the reader that Assef thinks himself as magical and ‘god-like’ and he sees it as his ‘mission’ to ‘take out the garbage’. Because Amir is fearful of Assef, it gives Assef the authority over Amir because he feeds from the fear that Amir feels towards him.
The violence that Assef has been conducting is clear through the ‘splotch of dried blood on his left sleeve’ that is still on Assef’s sleeve from the earlier killings during the football match, in chapter 21. This shows the lack of remorse that Assef has for his victims and also the pride he takes from the violence. The symbolism of the brass knuckles that Assef uses to physically attack Amir shows the aggression and violence as the brass knuckles are the same brass knuckles from Amir’s past encounters with the sociopath. By using the repetition of ‘Sohrab screaming,’ Hosseini tells the reader that the attack on Amir is horrific. Furthermore, the