What is the message of A Thousand Splendid Suns?

The message of A Thousand Splendid Suns is one of hope. Mariam and Laila are able to transcend the oppression they suffer at the hands of patriarchy and war: "Hovels shall turn to rose gardens."

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A Thousand Splendid Suns delivers a message of hope and optimism. For example, despite all the hardships she suffers, including sacrificing her life to save Laila and Laila's children, Mariam's life has meaning and worth. She lives on through Laila's memories and through the orphanage. The patriarchy might demean and...

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A Thousand Splendid Suns delivers a message of hope and optimism. For example, despite all the hardships she suffers, including sacrificing her life to save Laila and Laila's children, Mariam's life has meaning and worth. She lives on through Laila's memories and through the orphanage. The patriarchy might demean and oppress women, but both Mariam and Laila are able to transcend that through their friendship, faith, and solidarity.

Mariam's sacrifice of her own life in killing Rasheed expresses in moving terms her belief in the possibility of a better life for Laila outside of a world of patriarchal oppression. She takes action for the good, paradoxically, when she crushes Rasheed's head with the shovel to save her friend. She also shows courage and integrity when she takes responsibility for what she has done in terms of taking a life—even if was to defend the life of her friend—and accepts her execution.

Laila expresses the novel's message of hope in religious terms at the end of the story, as she visits the bright, well-ordered orphanage. There she thinks, "Hovels shall turn to rose gardens, grieve not." She thinks as well, that even if floods should come, "Noah" will be with them. The arc of history, in other words, bends towards hope for a brighter future.

Laila also makes the decision not to continue to grieve Mariam's death:

Mariam is never very far ... Mariam is in Laila's own heart, where she shines with the bursting radiance of a thousand splendid suns.

The protagonists in this novel suffer greatly, but the novel's message is that the human spirit is strong.

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