Kite

Kite Runner and the History of Afghanistan

  • Hassan gets surgery for his cleft lip

    Hassan gets surgery for his cleft lip
    Before Hassan receives his present, he meets Dr. Kumar, who tells Hassan, "My job is to fix things on people's bodies. Sometimes their faces" (Hosseini 45). Hassan's cleft lip demonstrates his economic status in the book. He cannot pay for the surgery himself, so Baba pays for it, which could also symbolize Baba's love for Hassan.
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    Kite Runner and The History of Afghanistan

  • Amir and Hassan win the kite flying contest

    Amir and Hassan win the kite flying contest
    After Amir and Hassan win the kite competition, “[Amir] was throwing [his] free arm around Hassan and [they] were hopping up and down” (Hosseini 66). Amir winning the competition symbolizes his struggle for Baba’s approval. Amir only received Baba’s approval after he wins the competition.
  • Hassan gets raped

    Hassan gets raped
    As Assef is about to rape Hassan, he says, “You’re a lucky Hazara…Because today, it’s only going to cost you that blue kite” (Hosseini 72). Assef will leave Hassan alone if he can have the kite Amir cut to win the contest. Just as the kite portrays approval from Baba to Amir, the kite displays approval from Assef’s parents to Assef and it shows how loyal Hassan is to Amir.
  • Hassan and the Pomegranate

    Hassan and the Pomegranate
    To satisfy Amir’s need to be punished by Hassan for watching his rape, Amir throws pomegranates at Hassan, waiting for him to throw one back. Amir, “wished [Hassan would] give [him] the punishment [he] craved” (Hosseini 92). Amir wanted Hasaan to throw a pomegranate at him so he could feel better about what he did. The pomegranate symbolizes the burden of the rape, and how Amir wants Hassan to blame him for his rape, but Hassan will not give Amir the concern of holding the rape.
  • Ali and Hassan leave

    Ali and Hassan leave
    Amir frames Hassan for stealing his watch and money, provoking Ali and Hassan to leave. Baba accepts Hassan’s apology by telling him, “I forgive you” (Hosseini 105). Baba’s action of accepting Hassan’s wrongdoing foreshadows Baba being Hassan’s father. Baba’s favoring of Hassan over Amir is because Baba is actually Hassan’s father too.
  • President Daoud Khan assassinated.

    President Daoud Khan assassinated.
    The President, Daoud Khan, was assassinated by a communist coup. His death was kept a secret from the public, and the new president had, "announced that former president Daoud had 'resigned for heath reasons'" (Rupert). Colley, Rupert. “The Afghan Wars: History in an Hour by Rupert Colley - EBook | HarperCollins.” HarperCollins UK, HarperCollins Publishers, www.harpercollins.co.uk/9780007451203/.
  • Soviet Union Invades Afghanistan

    Soviet Union Invades Afghanistan
    The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan in 1979 "in order to prop up the communist government of the People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan" (DesMarais). This invasion lasted 10 long years. Institute for the Study of War, Scott DesMarais, and Institute. “Afghanistan.” ISW Blog, 1 Jan. 1970, iswresearch.blogspot.com/search/label/Afghanistan.
  • Baba and Amir leave Afghanistan for the Bay Area

    Baba and Amir leave Afghanistan for the Bay Area
    When the Soviets invaded Afghanistan, Baba and Amir fled to the Bay Area because, “Baba loves the idea of America” (Hosseini 125). They travel to America to escape the war, but also to become successful. America symbolizes freedom and the American Dream, something all immigrants strive to reach.
  • Amir and Soraya get Married

    Amir and Soraya get Married
    Amir gets married to Soraya, but before that, she confesses to Amir that, “[she] ran away with an Afghan man” (Hosseini 164). Soraya’s confession demonstrates how truthful she is. Soraya compared to Amir, demonstrates how Amir is so disappointed in himself that he can’t even come to telling his wife about the rape.
  • Baba dies

    Baba dies
    Baba is diagnosed with lung cancer, and dies soon after the wedding. Amir realizes he has always been, “defined by Baba” (Hosseini 174). With Baba being gone, Amir wouldn’t have Baba’s help to work through life with him. This demonstrates how reliant Amir was on Baba and how Baba’s death would hurt him more than expected.
  • Soviets Pull Out Troops

    Soviets Pull Out Troops
    After the long war in Afghanistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the U.S. "sign peace accords and Soviet Union begins pulling out troops" (bbc.com).
    Afghanistan Profile - Timeline.” BBC News, BBC, 31 Jan. 2018, www.bbc.com/news/world-south-asia-12024253.
  • Amir gets his first book published

    Amir gets his first book published
    Amir finished his first novel and became a “published novelist” (Hosseini 183). This exhibits his perseverance even after Baba told him not to become an author. It also portrays how grateful he is of Rahim Khan for complimenting his work when he was young.
  • Najibullah is Replaced

    Najibullah is Replaced
    After the last Soviet troops left Afghanistan in 1989, mujahideen, guerrilla fighters, overthrew Najibullah. The Taliban soon took over and, "[introduced] hard-line version of Islam" (bbc.com) Afghanistan Profile - Timeline.” BBC News, BBC, 31 Jan. 2018, www.bbc.com/news/world-south-asia-12024253.
  • The Taliban Takes Over

    The Taliban Takes Over
    The Taliban, an "Islamic fundamentalist group" (Laub), took over Afghanistan in 1996 after killing the current president at the time, Mohammad Najibullah. Laub, Zachary. “The Taliban in Afghanistan.” Council on Foreign Relations, Council on Foreign Relations, 4 July 2014, www.cfr.org/backgrounder/taliban-afghanistan.
  • US bombs Bin Laden's Expected Bases

    US bombs Bin Laden's Expected Bases
    After Osama Bin Laden was accused of bombing the East African U.S. embassies, "the U.S. launched dozens of Tomahawk cruise missiles against two targets" (Desk). The missiles were launched at Bin Laden training camps and a pharmaceutical factory. Desk, News. “A Historical Timeline of Afghanistan.” PBS, Public Broadcasting Service, 4 May 2011, www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan.
  • The Taliban is Taken Down..Not For Long

    The Taliban is Taken Down..Not For Long
    After 9/11, the U.S. asked the Taliban for bin Laden, which they were declined. So, the U.S. worked with, "rebel groups that had never accepted Taliban rule" (New York Times) to drive the Taliban out. After a couple of years, the Taliban resurfaced and grew more powerful. New York Times. “Timeline Article--Afghanistan 2016-17.Pdf.” Google Drive, Google, 6 Dec. 2011, drive.google.com/file/d/0B-D5CY0peWsSTHdSaHF4dmhHR19yYnMwR0xucmMwd0tGU1A0/view.
  • Amir goes to Afghanistan to visit Rahim Khan

    Amir goes to Afghanistan to visit Rahim Khan
    Amir travels to Afghanistan to visit Rahim Khan who tells him, “I want you to go to Kabul. I want you to bring Sohrab here” (Hosseini 220). Hassan and his wife died, leaving Sohrab an orphan, giving Amir the responsibility of getting him back. Amir ends up taking on this challenge to redeem himself for witnessing Hassan’s rape and not doing anything.
  • Amir battles for Sohrab

    Amir battles for Sohrab
    Amir ends up fighting the Taliban leader, who turns out to be Assef, for Sohrab. As they are fighting, Sohrab intervenes with his slingshot and, “had the slingshot pointed to Assef’s face” (Hosseini 290). Shoran hits Assefs eye with the slingshot and Amir and Sohrab escape. This scene is a direct connection to the beginning of the book when Hassan threatens Assef with a slingshot.
  • Sohrab attempts Suicide

    Sohrab attempts Suicide
    Amir almost breaks his promise to Sohrab of not returning him to an orphanage, to which Hassan responds with attempting suicide. Sohrab attempted suicide because he is “tired of everything” (Hosseini 354). His attempt can be connected to the story he is named after, where the father wounds his long lost son. His attempt could also be connected to Raymond Andrews’ daughter who also committed suicide.
  • Amir returns with Sohrab

    Amir returns with Sohrab
    Amir takes Sohrab back to America, but Sohrab didn’t feel at home, as, “he walked like he was afraid to leave behind footsteps” (Hosseini 361). Sohrab’s silence portrays how he does not feel part of the family. The similarity between Sohrab’s silence and Amir’s silence after Hassan’s rape also demonstrates how similar Amir and Sohrab are as children.
  • Amir stands up for Sohrab

    Amir stands up for Sohrab
    One night at dinner, the General calls Sohrab a, “Hazara boy” (Hosseini 360). Amir tells the General to never call Sohrab that again and to call him by his name. Amir standing up for Sohrab portrays how confident he is now that he redeemed himself.
  • The Twin Towers Collapse in a Terrorist Attack

    The Twin Towers Collapse in a Terrorist Attack
    On September 11, members from Al-Qaeda hijacked four planes, two crashed into the Twin Towers, one in the Pentagon, and the last one in a field in Pennsylvania. The, "Islamic terrorists from Saudi Arabia and several other Arab nations" (History.com Editors) killed 2,996 people in total that day. History.com Editors. “9/11 Attacks.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 17 Feb. 2010, www.history.com/topics/21st-century/9-11-attacks.
  • U.S. Attack Backs

    U.S. Attack Backs
    After the 9/11 attack, the U.S. "[began] attacks on Taliban-controlled Afghanistan with an intense bombing campaign" (History.com Editors). History.com Editors. “U.S.-Led Attack on Afghanistan Begins.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 20 July 2010, www.history.com/this-day-in-history/u-s-led-attack-on-afghanistan-begins.
  • Amir and Sohrab fly a kite

    Amir and Sohrab fly a kite
    Amir finally gains Sohrab’s friendship back by asking him, “Do you want me to run that kite for you?” (Hosseini 371) at the park after Amir cut someones kite. Amir ran the kite for Sohrab, ultimately obtaining Sohrab’s trust. This exhibits how a small action, such as running a kite or throwing a pomegranate at someone, can change a friendship forever.
  • NATO Takes Over

    NATO Takes Over
    As Afghanistan became more and more violent, "NATO [North Atlantic Treaty Organization] [took] over security in Kabul in August" (Desk). Desk, News. “A Historical Timeline of Afghanistan.” PBS, Public Broadcasting Service, 4 May 2011, www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan.