Thursday, September 28, 2006

Kite Runner Essay

The novel "The Kite Runner," written by Khaled Hosseini, is about a young man named Amir and the experiences he went through during turmoil in his country, Afghanistan. The beginning of the story centers around Amir, the main character, and Hassan. Amir and Hassan are totally different people. Amir is well educated, a Sunni Muslim, and his a Pashtun. Also, Amir tends to read a lot of books. With his nerd-like attributes, Amir tends to be somewhat disappointing to his father’s eyes. In contrast to Amir’s coward personality would be Hassan caring personality. Hassan, a Hazara, is Sh’ia Muslim and a servant to Amir’s family. Aside from his status as a servant, he would still treat Amir with a lot of respect. Hassan would basically do everything for Amir. Also, Hassan would also back up Amir, every time he is in a hostile predicament. Though Hassan was illiterate, it did not stop him from caring about Amir. On the other hand, Amir was very jealous of Hassan because Baba, Amir’s father, admired Hassan more. Amir would do a lot of things that would disgrace and abuse Hassan. There was at one point of the novel where Amir tried to frame Hassan by stashing money under Hassan’s bed. Then, at one part of the book, the Russian invade Afghanistan, causing Hassan and Amir to split ways. Later on in the novel, Amir would try to return to his Afghanistan and to mend his wrong doings to Hassan. Though this story contains a lot of melancholy moments, one can not tend to ignore the propaganda that was inject within this novel. This novel contains numerous propaganda messages that would degrade the Afghan people. Many of the messages in this novel contains things about rape and violence that can propel people into thinking that Afghanistan is a wretched and filthy place.
There is definitely a lot of propaganda in this novel. In the novel, there are a lot of fine examples of negative propaganda. Parts of the book contained imagines of rape and massive violence The negative messages portrayed in the book would make Afghanistan citizens look bad. Though not all the Afghans are violent rapists, the ones in the book whoever are ones being used as propaganda. The most notable horrific incidents that happened in the book are the ones that include the raping of Amir’s servant Hassan, the raping of Sohrab, and terror acts committed by the Taliban.
Amir and Hassan were peacefully flying a kite during and Afghanistan event. When Amir’s kite flew away, Hassan was the one to chase after the kite. After retrieving the kite, Hassan and Amir were confronted by Assef and his gang. Assef and his crew assaulted and attack Hassan while Amir watch horror. Sadly, this incident ended with the raping of Hassan by Assef.
This part of the book should disgust a lot of readers. Usually people around that age would not even think of rape or violence at all. Instead of seeing only good people, this scene shows a trustworthy person being violated by malicious human beings. This image can definitely be used as negative propaganda. The rape scene can convince people that Afghans constantly rape each other. It also conveys a message that sex is violence in the eyes of the Afghan people.
The were plenty more rape incidents that occurred in this novel. Another notable rape scene can be found near the end of the book. After learning that Hassan is actually Amir’s step brother, Amir went in search for Hassan’s son Sohrab. Amir was informed that Sohrab was taken to a children’s orphanage. After arriving at the orphanage, Amir learned that Sohrab was no longer there. Sohrab was adopted and taken away from the orphanage. At that time, Amir learned the person who adopted Hassan’s son was the same person who raped him many years ago. Amir came with the conclusion that Assef, the bully that raped Hassan, was the one to adopted Sohrab. After tracing the steps and finding the location of the two, Amir learns that Sohrab was also raped by Assef. Again, rape and children is reappears in the story. This image of adopting children from orphanages and raping them can truly horrify anyone that reads about it. The rapping of Sohrab can heavily be used as negative propaganda. Sohrabs’s rape can convince a lot of people that Afghans are evil rapists.
Other than the subject of rape, there were numerous references to violence and hate through out the book. Most of the time, readers would encounter numerous racial slanders against a group known as the Hazara. The Hazara are very low class type of people. A lot of people in Afghanistan would despise the Hazara. The Taliban, a radical terrorist group in Afghanistan, is well known for their violent behavior against the Hazara. Sadly, Hassan was identified as a Hazara in the book. Later on in the story, Amir learned that Hassan, who stayed in Afghanistan, and his wife were utterly shot dead by the Taliban terrorist group. Unlikely for the Afghans, this can be used as negative propaganda as well. The Taliban and other hateful Afghans can convey a message that Afghans are murders and killers of their own people. Messages of death and killing can cause many viewers to despise the wicked Afghans.
There are many more propaganda that are within this book. For the most part, rape and violence seems to be the more highlighted ones. With these messages of sins, war groups, the promote war, can use the messages to boost their moral into attacking Afghans. This type of propaganda can not only be used for hate, but it can also be used for war as well. The propaganda mentioned in the book can help dehumanized the Afghans, causing a lot more people to hate them easier.
Overall, the was an extremely sad book. With the disturbing propaganda images, it can really convince people to despise Afghans. This however did not change my view on the Afghan people. Instead of giving into the propaganda message, I believed that not all Afghan people are evil and cunning. In fact, I still believe that Afghanistan does not have that much bad people. It is only the radical and hateful groups such as the Taliban that can promote the image of an evil Afghanistan. This novel did change my views of Afghanistan at all. It’s just like any other country. Some countries have bad and good people. This was a good book just as long as the readers ignore the propaganda messages.