Throughout the book The Kite Runner, written by Khaled Hosseini, guilt and redemption are ongoing themes. Amir is faced with several different situations in the start of the book where he made the wrong choice. These poor choices as a child continued to haunt Amir throughout his entire life. Eventually Amir is presented an opportunity to redeem himself of his guilt.
Amir grew up thinking that Hassan was his servant, and he would not even refer to him as a friend. However Hassan would do anything for Amir.” Hassan never wanted to, but if I asked, really asked, he wouldn’t deny me. Hassan never denied me anything.” (Amir, pg.4) Although Hassan was against something he would do anything Amir asked.
A high point for Amir was when he won the kite tournament, however this quickly turned bad after Amir witnessed Hassan being raped, while Hassan was looking for the last kite that had fallen. Amir did not stop them from raping him, and this choice changed Amir. Amir was guilt ridden after this event, he could not even stand to look at Hassan. Hassan still wanted to be Amir’s friend, but Amir wanted nothing to do with him, Amir even bullied Hassan. The guilt Amir faced after these events followed him well into adulthood.
Amir moved to the United States, got an education, and even got married. Amir went to college to study English although his father never seemed fauned of Amir’s decision. However there was a turning point when Baba was truly proud of what Amir had done. “Amir is going to be a great writer. He has finished his first year of college earning all A’s.” (Baba, pg.139)
Amir was shocked to hear this from his father. Amir went on to write a book. Hassan was no longer in the picture and no one knew what Amir had done. Amir was finally starting to enjoy his knew life. The guilt bottled inside over the many year. Amir’s father passed away and now the guilt was taking him over. Amir had no way to redeem himself until he was contacted by an old family friend from Afghanistan. This caused an unbelievable amount of guilt to take over Amir.
Amir was presented with the opportunity to go back to Afghanistan and make things right. Rahim Khan knew about Amirs past, but Rahim had much more information than Amir could imagine. Rahim informed Amir that Hassan was actually his brother and that Hassan is dead, but he has a child in an orphanage. “I felt like a man sliding down a steep cliff, clutching at shrubs and tangles of brambles and coming up empty-handed. The room was swooping up and down, swaying side to side. Did Hassan know?” (Amir, pg.222) Now Amir knew he had to go to Afghanistan to save Hassan’s son from the Taliban ridden country. Amir knows that this is what he needs to do to redeem himself for his previous mistakes.
When Amir arrived back to his hometown he started a journey to find his brother’s son and save him from the war ridden country. In the process of finding Hassan’s son, Sohrab, Amir was beaten by Assef, the boy who attacked Hassan. Amir did not fight back during this fight, he wanted Assef to hurt him. Amir’s guilt was starting to be relieved, he wanted to be beaten, he felt as if he deserved it. By saving Sohrab, Amir finally relieved himself of guilt. The theme of guilt and redemption was significant throughout the entire book. The moral of the story is guilt can truly affect someone for their entire life until they can redeem themselves.