How is the aspect of "community" contribute to a sense of belonging or not belonging represented in The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Perhaps the best example of a communal sense of belonging in Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner comes after Amir and Baba have left Afghanistan for America. They find in California a large number of Afghani transplants in the San Francisco Bay area--around Fremont (in the real-life area known as "Little Kabul," so named because of the large population of immigrants from Afghanistan), and at the San Jose flea market--and Baba and Amir discover a new source of friends, none greater than General Taheri's family and Amir's future wife, Soraya. Though Baba has left his wealth behind in Kabul and he no longer commands the power that he held in his homeland, he is still respected among the Afghani population. Amir's wedding is a huge success, and Baba's funeral is packed with people who remember The Bear's charity in Kabul.

Conversely, Hassan never feels a sense of community belonging while living in Baba's household. Although Hassan is loved from afar by Baba, Amir never considers Hassan an equal or even a friend. Hassan and Ali live apart from the main house, and Hassan has no friends of his own; he is scorned and harrassed on the streets because of his Hazara heritage. Hassan only feels at home when he moves away from Baba's house to live in a little Hazara village; when he returns to Baba's house to live with Rahim Khan, he does so out of an allegiance to Baba and Amir, rather than a sense of belonging. After the rise of the Taliban, Kabul is no longer a safe place for Hazaras, and Hassan and his wife die trying to protect Amir's home.

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The Kite Runner

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