Literary Devices in The Kite Runner
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, an Afghanistan-American writer, is an emotional, epic tale. The author focuses on the life of Amir, the protagonist, and illustrates his hatred, betrayal, cruelty, love, loyalty and friendship through the chaotic war in Afghanistan. Also, the author portrays Amir struggling vibrantly and heart-brokenly, yet sometimes shatteringly realistically, using effective linguistic devices: the first-person point of view the use of a foreign language. These literary elements act as a catalyst in the book to stimulate the readers emotions and curiosity about Afghanistan.
Using the first-person point of view in the novel, the author makes readers feel as though they are experiencing the protagonists personal feeling and thoughts about particular people or scenes. For example, when he is attending the opening ceremony of his fathers orphanage, Amir says that he wished theyd all died along with their parents (19), and this personalized emotion clearly depicts his strong desire for his fathers love and attention. Also, the writer uses this literary device to enhances the ability of the reader to follow Amirs epic journey from childhood to his adult self. Therefore, the reader directly perceives Amirs emotions and thoughts transforming throughout the novel. Amir starts off as a loving and caring personwhen Hassen is insulted by the soldiers, I reached across [Hassens] seat, slung my arm around [Hassen], pulled [Hassen] close. [Hassen] rested his head on my shoulder and Amir says He took you for someone else, I whispered(8). Then, he becomes dishonest and untrustworthy: Hassen knew I betrayed him and yet he was rescuing me once again, maybe for the last time(111). These examples in the book show how the first-person point of view can deeply connect the characters and the readers emotions.
Another intriguing literary device that the author employs in the novel is the usage of a foreign language, Farsi. Throughout the entire novel, Farsi is woven in naturally, especially in conversations. For instance, Amir calls his father Baba (12) or Baba jan (18) instead of dad or father, but the reader is able to translate these words by context. Also, those words such as Inshallah (36) or Naan (29), which represent the exotic culture of Afghanistan, are repeated at the end, and this technique provides more realistic aspects. Furthermore, most of the events occur in a foreign country where English is not the characters' native language; therefore, using Farsi in conversation appears more natural. As a result, this literary device gives the reader a much more vivid experience, as though the reader has participated in the scenes and met the characters themselves.
Khaled Hosseinis ingenious usage of the first-person point of view and the interpolation of a native language makes this book as unforgettable... extrodinary... powerful as Isabel Allende states when reviewing the book. The author, Khaled Hosseini, shows how the literary elements can be used as a powerful tool to refine and revive characters and situations from dull and tiresome to radiant and vital.
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