How does Baba confront his sins front the past and redeem himself?

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parkerlee eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Baba tries to compensate for sleeping with his servant's wife in several ways, but he never dares to confess what he has done - not to his servant Ali, not to Amir, and not even to Hassan. Instead, he gives gifts to Hassan while he is growing up and when he is of age to have the operation, he pays to have his harelip fixed. Amir feels some jealousy towards Hassan without understanding the true "tie that binds," without knowing that Hassan his his half-brother.

Later when they resettle in California, Baba softens up towards Amir in a way which he has never done before. When Amir meets Soraya at the flea market, Baba goes about doing his fatherly role according to Afghan custom so that the two can "court" and then marry. Baba must hurry, for his health is declining fast and the doctors have told him he hasn't much time yet to live.

Baba and Amir's relationship finishes on a bittersweet note, for soon after Baba's death, Amir learns about the family secret. Although Baba falls off his pedestal, so to speak, at this point, in Amir's eyes he is more human than ever. The bear he has wrestled with in his dream is finally brought down.


djmickz | Student

Baba does not confront his sins from the past but relies on monetary wealth to make himself feel better by giving Hassan presents and caring about him on special occasions. Amir does not understand why Baba gives Hassan so much attention until the moment Rahim Khan reveals that Hassan was in fact his half brother.

Amir is given many small hints as to his father's attitude towards Hassan. One scene occurs when Baba asks Amir to invite Hassan down to the lake with them but Amir sees Hassan as an obstacle for his ambition to be recognised and 'loved' by Baba. Yet, Baba does not pursue seeking a strong connection with Hassan because of his regretful actions. In truth, Baba is unhappy with both of his sons. In Amir, he is reminded of his deceased princess. In Hassan, he is reminded of the Hazara, Sanaubar, he had commited adultery with. If the reader appeals from Baba's perspective, they can conclude that after Amir's mother's death, Baba would have been left secluded and alone. Sanaubar was unhappy with Ali and may have comforted Baba, leading to conception of Hassan. This explains why Baba would not view Hassan as an equal compared to Amir. Hassan is the constant reminded of how much of a hypocrite Baba truly was.

Baba inadvertently proclaims himself a hypocrite when he speaks to Amir about his own morals. How everything is related to theft/stealing. "It is against the law to steal someone's wife, someone's right to life, someone's belongings". Yet, Baba had committed adultery with Ali's own wife! Their relationship could never work as the social interactions between Hazaras and Pashtuns were seen as disgraceful and inappropriate.


I hope this helps a bit, I can't be bothered writing an entire essay. These are just some key points with some ideas. If i WERE to continue I would mention:

- America's experiences of equality

-The incident of Amir planting his watch in Hassan's bed and Baba's reaction followed by his attempts in stopping Ali from leaving.


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The Kite Runner

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