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Conflicts in The Kite Runner Essay


The Kite Runner contains three main types of conflicts: personal, family and cultural conflicts. A personal conflict involves someone fighting against him or herself (Amir versus himself), or against someone else for a certain reason, (Amir and Hassan vs. Assef and his friends). A family conflict involves members of your family and close friends. Amir verse Baba and Amir Verse Hassan are two family conflicts. A cultural conflict involves different classes, cultures and beliefs. Conflicts affect you in ways you dont realize until you are back in the situation.

There are many personal conflicts in The Kite Runner. One personal conflict is Amir vs. Assef. When Amir goes back to Afghanistan after Baba died, to get Hassans son, Amir finds Sohrab is a sex slave to Assef. Assef will not let Amir take Sohrab without fighting him. Amir is close to death when Sohrab picks up his slingshot. Sohrab ends up shooting Assef in the face with a brass ball in a slingshot to protect Amir. Amir vs. himself is another conflict. Amir wonders if Hassan is just a Hazara, but then he realizes that Hassan is a really good friend to him. Hassan tries to protect Amir and listens to Amirs stories when his father wont. Hassan tries to be friends with Amir, but Amir just sits in his room and avoids Hassan, especially after the rape. Amir ends up talking to Baba and wants Baba to kick Ali and Hassan out of the dirt hut. Amir is closer with his fathers friend, Rahim Khan, than to his own father. Rahim listens to Amir, reads Amirs stories, and encourages him to write. Amir is a coward when it comes to protecting Hassan.

Two of the major family conflicts in The Kite Runner involve Amir and Baba, and Amir and Hassan. Amir and Baba have a strained relationship. Baba is demanding, and it is difficult to win his affection and respect. Baba is ashamed of Amir because he is not interested in soccer or hunting. Amir would rather read and write stories. Baba does not read Amirs stories because he feels he would be encouraging Amir to write when he needs to be playing sports and hunting. Baba feels that he is responsible for how Amir turns out; if Amir becomes a writer, Baba will feel like a failure. When Amir shows he can be an athlete by kite running, Baba is proud of Amir. It shows that Amir has a competitive side and he is not a coward. Amir feels that Baba is blaming him for his mothers death. There is also a conflict between Amir and Hassan. Amir finds out after Hassan and his father are dead, that he and Hassan are actually half brothers. Amir is also jealous of Hassan. Baba is more interested in Hassan than Amir. Hassan likes sports. Baba is upset when Hassan cant join them when they go out. He is supposed to help Hassans son, Sohrab, escape from Assef and get out of the country. Amir is also seen as a coward for hiding when Hassan is being raped. He betrays Hassans trust and loyalty.

Culture is another source of conflict in The Kite Runner. One cultural conflict would be Amir and Hassan vs. Assef. Because Amir and Hassan are from different classes, Assef feels they cannot be friend and torments both Amir and Hassan for being friends. Assef calls Hassan names that are associated with being Hazara. He calls Hassan names, such as fag, flat nose, and dirty Hazara. Hassan threatens to use a slingshot to hit Assef if he didnt leave them alone. Assef threatens Hassan saying that he will get back at him. He wants to face Amir one on one, so that Hassan would not be there to protect him. When Hassan is running for the kite later in the book, Assef traps and rapes Hassan while his friends hold him down. Amir is Pashtun, and Hassan is Hazara. Pashtuns are considered superior to Hazaras; who are usually servants. The Taliban seemed good at first because they kicked the Russians out of Afghanistan. In 1984, the Taliban started to take over Afghanistan. They made new laws for the people to follow, and they ended up killing people if they disobeyed the laws. Assef was part of this problem. He wanted to take out the trash, Amir told him that his theory in America is called ethnic cleansing. Assef wanted to kill the Hazaras. He tries to do what Hitler did to the Jewish during World War II.

The many conflicts in The Kite Runner affect Amir and his future. Personal, family, and cultural issues took control over his life. Amir is a tourist in his own country. His family is wealthy, and he does not have to live the way most of the people in Afghanistan live. He has privileges that all Afghanis want. Amir only sees what he wants to see, and doesnt realize that the country is different from when he lived there. He saw the country differently when he went back to pick up Sohrab. Amir realizes how the conflicts in his life affected him when he gets back to the United States with Sohrab. These personal, family and cultural conflicts Amir had in his life, helped him understand what it is really like for a normal Afghani.

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