The strong underlying force of this novel is the relationship between Amir and Hassan. Discuss their friendship. Why is Amir afraid to be Hassan’s true friend? Why does Amir constantly test Hassan’s loyalty? Why does he resent Hassan? After the kite running tournament, why does Amir no longer want to be Hassan’s friend? What major themes does the nature of their friendship explore?

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The full extent of the complexities in Amir’s and Hassan’s relationship is made apparent very late in the novel. Once the reader learns the reasons that Baba, Amir’s father, paid special attention to Hassan, we can see that Amir’s apparently irrational attitudes had some basis in fact. The strong class, ethnic, and religious divisions in Afghan society are manifested in the relationship between the two boys, which in some ways is an extension of their father’s relationship. Baba seems to be a conservative, traditionally minded man who believes that servants should continue in a subordinate status. For example, Hassan does not receive an education. Yet Amir, believing that his father is too hard on him and too soft on Hassan, becomes increasingly jealous of Hassan and treats him unkindly.

Amir grows up with a sense of entitlement that his class position supports. Living in America influences his attitudes toward class, and he begins to understand the reasons he abandoned Hassan...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 717 words.)

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