In The Kite Runner, what symbols represent Rahim Khan?

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In The Kite Runner, Rahim Khan plays a small but pivotal role. None of the more obvious symbols in the text are associated with Rahim Khan, but it is possible to think of Amir's journal and the phone call as symbols that are tied to Rahim Khan.

Amir begins his narrative on an evening in which he has received a phone call from Rahim Khan. Rahim Khan asks Amir to visit him in Pakistan and tells him that "There is a way to be good again" (Hosseini, 2). However, as Amir thinks about the phone call, he says "I knew it wasn't just Rahim Khan on the line. It was my past of unatoned sins" (Hosseini, 1). This phone call is about much more than just this moment or a request from a friend. This phone call is representative of all of his memories and past actions calling for atonement. This call represents all the guilt that Amir has been carrying around and his inability to let go of the past. Rahim Khan stirs his conscience and recalls him to the past, to his former life, and to his former country.

The other possible symbol associated with Rahim Khan is the notebook that he gives Amir for his birthday. Amir loves to write stories, and Rahim Khan is the first person to support this. He gives Amir a leather-bound notebook for his birthday and encourages him to write more stories. Amir keeps this notebook for several years and does write many stories in it. Eventually, Amir becomes a famous writer. Symbolically, this notebook is tied to Rahim Khan and represents the support that Rahim Khan gave Amir to follow his dreams and be himself.

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