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Chapter 10
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Chapter 10 begins with an establishment of narrative time ­
"March 1981"
The jump between these two points in time indicate that since
Hassan and Ali had to leave for Hazarajat, nothing significant
has happened in Amir's life.
Up until now, we can assume that Amir's life has been
mundane and important, however Hosseini reverts to the first
narrative technique adopted in the beginning of the novel,
where the narrator withholds information from the reader in
order to hold attention.
At the age of 18, Amir still suffers carsickness and is still seen
as another "array of weakness" in the eyes of Baba.
We can see the difference between young Amir and the 18
year old Amir; he is more aware of what Baba thinks of him.
"I saw it on his embarrassed face"
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In chapter 10, we learn that Kabul, the place Amir used to call home
has been seized by Shorawi, and he and Baba have been forced to
We are introduced to Karim, who smuggles people out of Kabul to
Pakistan, and is taking Amir and Baba as well as "about a dozen"
other refugees.
"Standing on the shoulder of the road" Amir begins to recall on the
rushed and panicked way he and Baba had left Kabul, and in doing
so gives the reader insight into what it was like to live in "Showari-
occupied Kabul"
Amir describes dishes "piled in the kitchen sink; laundry in wicker
basket" and "Baba's business suits hanging in the closet".
The contrasting to the things that they had taken with them: his
parents "wedding picture" and the "leather-bound notebook" that
Rahim Khan had given him "five years earlier".
We then go on to learn thatJacqueline
in the Darkwa
five years since Ali and Hassan…read more

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Some way into the novel, we witness an encounter between Baba and a
Russian soldier.
The soldier says that for the safe passing of the refugees, he should have
"half an hour with the lady in the back of the truck." Despite pleas from the
husband the soldier persists, until Baba stands up.
This moment is significant, because as Baba stands up, Amir goes to
"clamp a hand on his thigh" as Baba had done previously. However, when
Amir does so, Baba "snatched his leg away"
This scene demonstrates the contrast between Baba and Amir. Amir could
not stand up for Hassan, the person he claims to love "more than I'd ever
loved anyone", but just stood there. Yet, here is Baba, "Mr. Hurricane.",
risking his life, for a woman, he does not even know, just a poor stranger.
Baba snaps at Amir, that he must stand up for things of "indecency". In that
moment, Amir can see that he is nothing like his father, and even questions,
whether he "really was Baba's son."
Every time Amir tries to sit his father down, Baba reacts more vigorously-
Baba is disgusted by his own son's inability to fight for anything
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When the truck isn't ready to take them on to Peshawar, Amir
realizes he is in a dark basement room with about thirty others.
Among those others is Kamal, one of the boys who hung around
Only catching "snippets" of the conversation between Kamal's father
and Baba, Amir overhears that Kamal had an suffered the same
treatment he took part in with Assef and Hassan with four other
Kamal acts as a symbol to both karma and what painful existence
Hassan could be suffering at that exact point in time.
Emerging from the tanker that had transported them across the
country, Amir and Baba rush to the screaming of Kamal's father
holding "Kamal's lifeless body" who had died from the fumes.
In a state of anger and hopelessness, he lunges for Karim's gun and
shoves "the barrel in his own mouth."
The imagery used by Hosseini in the suicide of Kamal's father
manifests the brutal and bloody world that they had found
themselves victims of.
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Slide 6

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After they climb out of the fuel truck, Amir sums up the total of
Baba's existence in Pakistan:
"After everything he'd built, planned, fought for, fretted over, dreamed, this was the
summation of his life: one disappointing son and two suitcases."
The suitcases symbolise the old lives of Amir and Baba, and their
new life ahead.
The detail about the two suitcases is significant because although
their lives in Afghanistan were extremely different from one
another's, the only difference between Ali and Hassan's leaving of
their long time home and Baba and Amir's leaving is one suitcase.
Ali and Hassan had one suitcase when they left in the rain; Baba
and Amir had only one more than that. Both sets of fathers and sons
are forced to leave their home through no fault of their own.
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