The Kite Runner Essays On Deceit

(Click the themes infographic to download.)

The plot of The Kite Runner revolves around the protagonist's betrayal of his best friend. In a way, this betrayal drives the rest of the book and perhaps everything that precedes it. In his pre-betrayal and post-betrayal chapters, Hosseini asks some important questions. For example, do you betray someone without warning, or do small betrayals lead up to a larger one? Can you redeem yourself after you've betrayed a friend? If your father betrayed his friend are you doomed to repeat the same mistake? Can you redeem your sins and your father's at the same time? Or does redemption work like a coupon – only one per customer?

Questions About Betrayal

  1. We think the main betrayal of the book happens in Chapter 7 when Amir doesn't protect Hassan from Assef. However, the novel has plenty of other betrayals in it. Tally them up. Does Baba betray anyone? Does Amir betray multiple people? Do smaller betrayals lead up to this larger one? Do the other betrayals help us interpret Amir's abandonment of Hassan in the alleyway?
  2. Baba never tells Amir he fathered Hassan. Amir never tells Baba he left Hassan in the alleyway, or that he put the watch and money under Hassan's mattress. What role does silence play in the novel? Can betrayal (like silence) be continuous?
  3. Early on in the novel, Baba drops the following knowledge: "Now, no matter what the mullah teaches, there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft. Do you understand that?" (3.29). Through the character of Baba, Hosseini invites us to look at any wrongdoing in terms of theft. Explain each betrayal in the novel in terms of theft. What has been stolen? Is Baba's theory useful or has he been drinking too much scotch?
  4. Do any betrayals happen on a larger, political scale? Do they map onto the betrayal(s) of the individual characters?

He asked me to fetch Hassan too, but I lied and told him Hassan had the runs. I wanted Baba all to myself.

Amir was always envious of Baba's affection towards Hassan. He never understood how Baba would treat Hassan like his son. Amir only learned later that Hassan was his half-brother. Sanaubar, Hassan’s mother, got intimate with Baba so she could have a child because Ali was sterile. However, she abandoned Hassan soon after...

He asked me to fetch Hassan too, but I lied and told him Hassan had the runs. I wanted Baba all to myself.

Amir was always envious of Baba's affection towards Hassan. He never understood how Baba would treat Hassan like his son. Amir only learned later that Hassan was his half-brother. Sanaubar, Hassan’s mother, got intimate with Baba so she could have a child because Ali was sterile. However, she abandoned Hassan soon after he was born. Further, she was a Hazara and could not have an official relationship with Baba. Although Baba did not publicly relate with Hassan as his father, he always treated him as such. He invited him whenever they were going for trips with Amir.

I faked interest for as long as possible. I cheered with him when Kabul’s team scored against Kandahar.

In attempts to live up to his father’s expectations, Amir pretended to like football, at least, as a spectator. Baba was athletic during his youth. He hoped his son would follow in his footsteps. However, Amir was not inclined to live up to his father’s expectations. Instead, he was interested in literature. This irked his father who viewed poetry or literature as an embodiment of his son’s “soft” character.

‘Imbecile.’ It means smart, intelligent. I’ll use it in a sentence for you. ‘When it comes to words, Hassan is an imbecile.

In this instance, Amir employed his knowledge of English to deceive Hassan. Hassan was illiterate with no hopes of ever attending school because of his social status. He relied on Amir to explain some of the words he did not understand, but during this instance, Amir lied to him. However, Amir did this in jest as he was teasing Hassan.

I lifted Hassan’s mattress and planted my new watch and a handful of Afghani bills under it.

Amir lied to his father about his lost watch, which he had planted in Hassan’s room. He did not want Hassan around him anymore because of the guilt he carried around. He did nothing to help Hassan when Assef raped him.

Categories: 1

0 Replies to “The Kite Runner Essays On Deceit”

Leave a comment

L'indirizzo email non verrà pubblicato. I campi obbligatori sono contrassegnati *