In "The Kite Runner," write a theme statement and a thesis statementIn "The Kite Runner," write a theme statement and a thesis statement for the topic: "How does the opening scene/first chapter...

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You are being asked to do two related tasks, and your ability to discern the themes of the novel will help you think critically about how Hosseini crafts his opening chapter to help the reader see where this novel is heading and what is going to be about.

The first chapter is only about one page long, but it accomplishes a lot.  As you start reading there are certain words on the page that strike you, and those words are suggestive of themes: burying the "past," "unatoned sins," "'for you a thousands times over,'" "kite runner" (title of the novel), and that a past event "made me who I am today."

A theme statement would be a complete sentence about one or a combination of the above topics. For example, a theme statement could be: Human beings are shaped by the events of their past and make them into the people they are in the present.

A thesis statement would be more specific.  You would want to talk about the character specifically and discuss how Hosseini draws the reader into the story.  He uses foreshadowing and vague references to past events that make the reader want to read more to find out what exactly happened in that dark alley.  You want to find out what it means to be a kite runner, and why the kites seem important to the speaker.  You want to find out what the unatoned sins are and find out if the main character can "be good again."  It is a very intriguing start, but Hosseini is laying out many details to give the reader a glimpse into the events and emotions of this powerful novel.

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