The Kite Runner Quotes: Principles

  • Created by: mhannah
  • Created on: 03-05-18 23:25
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  • The Kite Runner Quotes: Principles
  • "The problem, of course, was that Baba saw the world in black and white. And he got to decide what was black and what was white. You can't love a person who lives that way without fearing him too. Maybe even hating him a little."
    • Chapter 3. Description of Baba here paints him as quite a dominating character; he is imposing. He is both a free-thinker and a moralist
  • "Now, no matter what the mullah teaches, there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft."
    • Chapter 3. To Amir, Baba is both larger-than-life and principled. The combination of these two qualities magnifies Amir's shame when he abandons Hassan in the alleyway.
      • Baba – before Amir was born – stole Ali's honor. With that in mind, Baba's bit of advice to Amir contains a good deal of self-loathing.
  • "A boy who won't stand up for himself becomes a man who can't stand up to anything."
    • Chapter 3. According to Baba, Amir never stands up for himself; he always lets Hassan defend him. And someone who can't stand up for himself can't stand up for a friend, or his principles, or anything.
    • Irony comes into focus later when Amir watches Assef **** Hassan and doesn't intervene. So Amir secretly listens to his father criticize the betrayal he will later secretly commit. Irony and foreshadowing at the same time.
  • "Tell him he's wrong. War doesn't negate decency. It demands it, even more than in times of peace."
    • Chapter 10. An Afghan woman is about to be ****d but Amir tries to get his father to sit down. Reminiscent of his actions earlier in the novel with Assef's ****
      • Baba does what Amir failed to do. Amir attempting to hinder his father is as if some unconscious part of him wants his father, and the others in the truck, to share his guilt instead of magnifying it.
  • "...alleviated one of his greatest fears: that an Afghan would see him buying food with charity money."
    • Chapter 11. Baba never wavers in his principles, particularly of independence and self-sufficiency; he maintains certain aspects of Afghan culture-- honour-- here
      • This strong display of morals and principles makes Baba's adultery with Sanaubar more shocking
  • "I make one mistake and suddenly everyone is talking nang and namoos, and I have to have my face rubbed in it for the rest of my life." (Soraya)
    • Chapter 13. Hypocrisy within Afghan culture particularly between treatment of men and women
  • "He told...him...that he had two bullets in the chamber, one for him and one for himself if I didn't come home."
    • Chapter 8. General Taheri shows up one night to his daughter's apartment because she's been living with an Afghan man; importance of honor to General Taheri. He's willing to kill both himself and Soraya's boyfriend to save not only her honor but his own.
  • "And now, fifteen years after I'd buried him, I was learning that Baba had been a thief. And a thief of the worst kind, because the things he'd stolen had been sacred: from me the right to know I had a brother, from Hassan his identity, and from Ali his honor. His nang. His namoos."
    • Chapter 18. Amir's guilt has partly resulted from Baba's very strict adherence to a personal code. Baba's set of principles include honor (nang), pride (namoos), and loyalty. Now Amir finds out the following: not only did Baba "steal" Ali's honor and pride, but he stole a sense of self from Hassan, and a brother from Amir.


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