Khaled Hosseini author of The Kite Runner shows a story of pure love, trust and betrayal towards two completely different people. A friendship that takes place where class matters and your depended on your race. The story is about a boy name Amir who is the son of a wealthy man in the northern area of Kabul, who develops a friendship with his servant name Hassan. Amir never considered calling Hassan a friend because of his low class Hazara heritage and Amir can’t get past the society they lived in. Amir had felt this way because he had known that neither religion nor history can change what they where. Amir was Pashtun and Hassan was a Hazara and that’s what society had considered it. Amir and Hassan were friends, but it was nearly impossible to show it in public because of there backgrounds. One of the central issues in this novel is how friendship is experienced, understood and expressed between two social unequals when they have been pushed together by circumstance. Amir always took advantage of Hassan, knowing that Hassan would still have his loyalty and respect. Although Hassan is Amir’s servant friend, the Hazara boy also served as Amir’s protector. In fact, Hassan would always defend Amir from the other boys, in chapter 5 he stoop up for Amir pointed his slingshot to Assef because he was harassing Amir. Amir is inconsiderate in his treatment of Hassan. Sometimes he treats Hassan as his friend but frequently he abuses Hassan, treating him over with his superior social class, education and position as Baba’s son. Amir would make fun of him whenever he had the chance, but Hassan never took it insulting he still considered Amir as his best friend. In chapter 3, while Amir read to Hassan, He made up the ending of the story and Hassan loved it. He said “That was the best story you’ve read me in a long time (30).” Without knowing it Hassan made Amir’s future because that same night Amir had wrote his first story. Hassan and Amir where best friends, but Amir tend to look down upon Hassan because of his position in the household. The more Amir mistreated Hassan the more of his love and loyalty grew towards Amir. Kite flying was a major event that took over once year, which the kite symbolized both friendship and violence the represented Afghanistan and the relation between Hassan and Amir. As Hassan caught the last kite for Amir he said “For you a thousand times over (67)! ” Without knowing that moment those words would change Amir’s life, because he knew Hassan would do anything for him. That is when the devastating incident occurred that changed the friendship of Amir and Hassan. “I opened my mouth, almost said something. Almost. The rest of my life might have turned out differently if I had. But I did not. I just watched paralyzed (73).” Hassan was protecting the kite from Assef to help Amir, by not giving away the kite. Hassan ended up being molested, and Amir ran away. He betrayed the person that once stood up for him, that one person who would do anything for him. Amir was being selfish he did not want to get hurt and he wanted to make Baba happy with that last kite and because Hassan was just a Hazara boy. Amir couldn’t stand living with Hassan anymore, because of his guilt he tried to make it seem that Hassan stole money from him. Hassan took the blame for stealing it because he was trying to protect Amir as he always did. Hassan and his father decided to leave without knowing that was the last time Amir would ever see Hassan. Amir was never left alone with his father he always took Hassan with him leading to foreshadowing a scene that takes place later in the novel. After Baba dies Rahim Khan tells Amir that Hassan is his half brother, but both he and his wife died and left an orphanage son. Amir decided it was time for him to help and find the child (Sohrab); he did not want to be the same coward he was as a child. Amir saw so many similarities between Sohrab and Hassan. Through the long journey of rescuing Sohrab, Amir finally began to see who he really was. “There is a way to be good again (226).” Rahim Khan was the only one who truly knew about everything of Amir’s past. He knew Amir was a coward and ran away and he knew that Amir was suffering and he wanted to relive him of his guilt; the only way to do was to care for Hassans only child. Amir and Hassans friendship was hard to be considered in society, something Amir always had trouble with. Instead of following his heart, he listens to the tease of soldiers and schoolmates, who remind him of Hassan’s and Ali’s role as servants and not equals. Part of Amir’s philosophy actually comes from Baba as well; in none of Baba’s stories did he ever refer to Ali as his friend. Especially as a young child Amir feels close to Hassan. “We were kids who had learned to crawl together, and no history, ethnicity, society or religion was going to change that either (32).” Amir spends a lot of his free time with Hassan, telling him stories and flying kites. But peer pressure and jealousy cloud Amir’s vision, and when Hassan defended Amir from Assef and his friends, Amir even wanted to tell them that “he’s not no my friend!.. He’s my servant.” But Hassan wasn’t just his servant he served as his protector too. When Amir’s cowardice prevents him from helping Hassan from Assed, Amir can no longer live with Hassan. Years later is when he realizes that Hassan was more than a servant; he was Amir’s friend and his brother. Amir would do just about anything for Hassan if have was still alive, for him a thousand times over.
Hosseini, Khaled. The Kite Runner. New York: Penguin Group, 2003. Print.