The Kite Runner Questions and Answers
by Khaled Hosseini

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What are four examples of metaphors in The Kite Runner?

Four examples of metaphors in The Kite Runner are as follows: Amir compares the past to an object that can be buried, he likens the Hazaras to "load-bearing donkeys," he compares Hassan to a lamb to be slaughtered, and he likens himself to a monster.

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A metaphor is a comparison that does not use the words like or as.

In one use of a metaphor, Amir likens the past to an object you can bury. An object that is buried is easily forgotten because you are not looking at it all the time: it is lost in a dark place. In saying this, Amir is challenging the cliche that says you can't forget the past:

... it’s wrong what they say about the past, I’ve learned, about how you can bury it

In Afghanistan, the Hazaras are called "load-carrying donkeys," a metaphor that compares them to beasts of burden.This shows how the Hazaras, because they look Asian, are persecuted by the racist Pashtuns by being reduced to animal status.

In the quote below, Amir compares Hassan to lamb that has to be slain. This is a very traditional metaphor, implying that like a young lamb, Hassan is an innocent who the more powerful can kill to serve their own needs. This metaphor alludes to Amir's higher position in the social hierarchy than Hassan, a despised Hazara:

Maybe...

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