The Kite Runner Symbolism Essay

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Traditionally, kites symbolize freedom and happiness, in other perspectives, restraint and control, all ideas that can be applied to events and characters in The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. However, kites symbolize so much more in the novel, the three stages of Amir and Hassan's relationship: love, betrayal, and redemption.

The beginning of the novel displays the kite fighting contest as the last good time that Amir and Hassan shared together. Hassan is attacked immediately after this, and it permanently changes their friendship. To describe what kite fighting meant to the hopeful boys, Hosseini writes: “In Kabul, fighting kites was like going to war.” Building the kite together symbolizes the friendship between the boys and the bonding in their relationship; similar to the brotherhood symbolized by the fact that they were both nursed by the same woman. It made the two boys seem inseparable. Although they were very close,
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Flying kites is what he enjoys most as a child, kites symbolize his happiness at this point in the novel. Kite flying is the only way that Amir connects with Baba, who was also once a champion kite fighter. Although Amir believes that he has just deemed himself as a man to his father, his manhood and pride is quickly snatched away. Hassan runs the kite for Amir because he wanted to show it to Baba but he ends up being raped, and Amir saw it all. After thinking about what he had just witnessed, Amir thinks to himself : “Maybe Hassan was the price I had to pay, the lamb I had to slay to win Baba.” At this point in the novel, kites take on a much different significance. Amir’s thoughts after the incident now portray kites as a sign of his betrayal to Hassan. It is from here onwards in the novel that Amir tries desperately to redeem himself for what he has done to Hassan. And it is not until the end of the novel that Amir flies a kite again, this time, with

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