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In The Kite Runner, how does Amir's betrayal of Hassan, and the guilt he feels, affect...

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ameliaweight | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted June 3, 2011 at 10:28 PM via web

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In The Kite Runner, how does Amir's betrayal of Hassan, and the guilt he feels, affect his relationships with other characters in the novel?

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 3, 2011 at 11:41 PM (Answer #1)

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The guilt that Amir feels haunts him for many years, and he feels an emptiness in his life long after he relocates to California. Although he takes pride in his accomplishments as a student and, later, a writer, he feels a general unworthiness of his inner character. He questions whether he is worthy of his wife, Soraya; and becoming a part of her illustrious family and General Taheri. His inability to father a child with his wife further symbolizes his past guilt. Though his relationship with Baba improves in San Jose, he stills feels inferior to his father and recognizes that Baba's past accomplishments still far outweigh his own. He is made to feel unworthy by his driver, Farid, upon his return to Afghanistan, and it is only after he takes the steps to retrieve Sohrab does Farid show him respect. The fact that Amir never made any attempts to locate or contact Hassan or Rahim Khan while in America shows that he was just trying to forget his past transgressions by distance and disassociation. It is only after Rahim summons Amir to Pakistan that Amir begins to see how his guilt can be alleviated. 

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