Khaled Hosseini effectively displays violence and guilt in ‘The Kite Runner’ as being destructive which affects other people’s lives

Khaled Hosseini effectively displays violence and guilt in ‘The Kite Runner’ as being destructive which affects other people’s lives. Hosseini uses his main character, Amir, to express how any form of violence, guilt and betrayal could ultimately demolish relationships. The focal act of violence in the novel was presented when Hassan was getting raped by a sadistic bully, Assef. A racist who is incapable of remorse and relishes to impose violence as well as sexual abuse on those who are frail and defenceless. This causes Amir emotional abuse as he is unable to protect his friend due to his fear towards Assef and need for a fatherly figure who cherishes him and makes him proud. He is afraid at first but later thinks “Nothing was free in this world. Maybe Hassan was the price I had to pay, the lamb I had to slay to win Baba. Was it a fair price?”. This shows how his guilt turns into shame and then to anger on his cowardice actions. His suppressed guilt creates tension and regrets in his life that it begins to desolate his happiness, excluding himself from any form of ecstasy that knocks at his door, “the fear that one is forever branded as the result of one’s actions”. Hosseini rigorously orchestrated the rape scene by positioning Amir behind the alleyway wall, this makes the readers reluctant beholders of the rape and the guilt which afflicts Amir throughout the novel inhabited with the reader too-“I remember the precise moment, crouching behind a crumbling mud wall, peeking into the alley”. There are also various instances of rape displayed in the novel- it is insinuated that one of the tormentors,Kamal, was raped by soldiers, Baba saved a woman from the hand of a Russian soldier. The rape of Sohrab which is never shown, reflects Hassan’s role as a ‘sacrificial lamb’ and his dread during that time. In the novel, sheep are slaughtered as a sacrifice to Allah in Islam, as a form of devotion as well as an atonement for an individual’s peccadillos. This ceremony is performed to “celebrate how the prophet Ibrahim almost sacrificed his son for God”. According to the Islamic faith, sheep are sacrificed to purify someone of their sins and that we can sacrifice even our most valuable and sacred things in Allah’s command. Hassan’s face when about to be raped is full of anguish and despair, reminding Amir of the look on the goat when it was about to be slaughtered “it was a look I had seen before, it was the look of the lamb”. Hosseini evokes the brutal and destructive ability of guilt thorough amir and hassan’s, baba and ali’s relationship, depicting that if one immoral action is committed towards a friend it could entirely consume one’s life.