Comparative Essay Between the Kite Runner and Obasan
The novels, Obasan by Joy Kogawa and The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini both express the development of character through theme. In The Kite Runner, Amir is haunted by his past. He tries to forget events that had left his best friend, Hassan to lead a terrible fate. In Obasan, as a child, Naomi lived with discrimination even in her homeland, Canada; she must escape and live in the shadows. Both characters return to their past; Amir must make up for his sins and learn a family secret while Naomi’s brought to rediscover the racism kept away from her in her youth. The protagonists, Amir and Naomi develop as individuals when they discover their past, learn from their past and deal with the events that had forever changed their lives.
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This revelation makes Amir furious because it was Baba’s words that said stealing was the same as lying and it was a sin. “There is only one sin. And that is theft…When you tell a lie, you are stealing someone’s right to the truth.” (Hosseini, 237) Baba had stolen Amir’s rights to a brother, Hassan’s identity and Ali’s honor as an individual. (Hosseini, 237) He expresses that, “my whole life is one big fucking lie!” (Hosseini, 237) Rahim Khan expresses his true reason for calling Amir, he had “summoned [him] here to atone not just for my sins but for Baba’s too.” (Hosseini, 238) Amir had to journey back to Kabul and retrieve Hassan’s son, Amir’s nephew, in order to right his wrongs.
The protagonists individually find a way to find good it what their lives had become. Naomi finds redemption through forgiveness, she begins to move on. She takes what she had learned and in her way copes with it. Amir, on the other hand, finds redemption through atoning for his sins as well as his father’s. He had gained courage within himself to find his nephew and bring him home, “[He] was older now, but maybe not yet too old to start doing [his] own fighting.” (Hosseini, 239) Amir learned that he was more similar to his father than he ever realized, “Your father, like you, was a tortured soul,” (Hosseini, 316), but Baba had tried to atone for his sins by creating real good out of his remorse. Rahim Khan wanted Amir to do the same. They had both sinned and betrayed, but Baba