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The Kite Runner - Theme of "identity/self-discovery"

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Emily Park

on 6 November 2012

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Transcript of The Kite Runner - Theme of "identity/self-discovery"

Introduction In the Beginning... Conclusion How is identity formed? Is it through the encounters we have with people we have met throughout our lives that form our identity?


Could our identity be formed from societal pressure on how we should be instead of how we are? Personal identity is formed from our birth and for some till we are adults. Forming a personal identity is extremely important, because the question "who am I?" is one of those big questions that we all crave to find an answer to.


In the novel Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, the main character Amir makes everything around him to form his identity other than figuring out one for himself. Amir believes that the reason him and Baba never get along is because they have absolutely nothing in common. Baba likes sports while Amir prefers to write short stories.


Quote: "Something is missing in that boy...A boy who won't stand up for himself becomes a man who can't stand up to anything" (Hosseini 22). Finally Amir, as the book continues tries to figure out his identity and stop running away from who he is and what he has done. Without fixing the past, the present cannot be lived in so much pleasure.

At the end of the book, Amir becomes the kite runner for Sohrab, taking Hassan's role. It is his journey that makes him the kite runner. Emily Park & Josie Tortorella In the Beginning... Amir is jealous of the attention Baba gives Hassan. He treats him in the same way he treats Amir, even though he is a Hazara. Hassan is not Baba's son so there's no reason he should be given the same attention.


Quote: "If I changed my mind and asked for a bigger and fancier kite, Baba would buy it for me-but then he'd buy it for Hassan too. Sometimes I wished he wouldn't do that. Wished he'd let me be the favorite" (Hosseini 51). Realization After Rahim Khan tells Amir the truth about his father, Amir starts to think about the lie and realizes they both indeed to have something in common.

Quote: "As it turned out, Baba and I were more alike than I'd ever known. We had both betrayed the people who would have given their lives for us" (Hosseini 226). Realization After Rahim Khan tells Amir the truth about his father, he begins to realize why his father had always treated Hassan in the same way that he treated Amir. Baba was torn between two of his sons and he loved them both equally. In the Beginning... Amir teases Hassan while reading him stories. He gives him incorrect definitions for words and makes up stories instead of reading off of the paper.


Quote: "'Let's see. Imbecile. It means smart, intelligent. I'll use it in a sentence for you. When it comes to words, Hassan is an imbecile'" (Hosseini 29).

[imbecile: a stupid person] Realization As Soraya tells Amir the story of her teaching experience with Ziba, he realizes he was wrong and immature for doing the opposite with Hassan. In the Beginning... Amir is embarrassed to be friends with Hassan and doesn't want to be seen playing with him because of different ethnicity.


Quote: "But he's not my friend! I almost blurted. He's my servant!" (Hosseini 41). Realization When Amir learns that Hassan is his half-brother, he feels even more guilty than he had felt his entire life. Even though Hassan was part Hazara, he is still his family and deserves to be treated with respect. Therefore, he puts all of his effort and energy into saving Hassan's son, Sohrab to redeem himself from what he did.


"Come. There is a way to be good again" (Hosseini 192).
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