The Kite Runner: A Story of Friendship, Betrayal, and Redemption

Friendship is one of the main themes of The Kite Runner. The narrator and protagonist, Amir, is a successful writer living in the United States who looks back on his childhood in Afghanistan, during the time when the Taliban were in power. One of the most important relationships in the novel is between Amir and Hassan, two boys who grow up together in Kabul.

The story of Amir and Hassan's friendship is one of loyalty, betrayal, and ultimately, redemption.

Childhood Conventions

In Afghanistan, there are strict social conventions that dictate how people should behave. These conventions are based on a system of hierarchy and power.

For example, there is a clear division between rich and poor. The rich are expected to have servants, who are usually poorer Afghans. This is the case with Amir and Hassan. Amir's father, Baba, is a successful businessman, so they can afford to have Hassan as their servant.

There is also a division between ethnic groups. The majority of Afghans are Pashtuns, but Hassan is from the Hazara minority group. Hazaras are often discriminated against by Pashtuns. This is one reason why Hassan is loyal to Amir, because Amir is one of the few people who treats him with respect.

These divisions create a hierarchy of power and status. Wealthy Pashtuns have more power than poorer Pashtuns, and Pashtuns have more power than Hazaras. This hierarchy is something that Amir and Hassan are aware of from a young age.

The Kite Runner

The Kite Runner is a story about friendship, betrayal, and redemption set against the backdrop of Afghanistan's turbulent history.
The novel follows Amir from his childhood in Kabul through his years in exile in America after the Taliban come to power.
One of the most important relationships in the novel is between Amir and Hassan
Hassan is two years younger than Amir
They live in the same neighborhood and go to the same school
Even though they are different ethnicities – Amir is a Pashtun and Hassan is a Hazara – they become close friends
In many ways, they are like brothers
However, their friendship is also shaped by the hierarchies of power and status that exist in Afghan society
Because Amir comes from a wealthy family and Hassan's family is poor, Amir has more power than Hassan
This power dynamic comes into play when Amir asks Hassan to fetch his kite for him after he wins a kite-flying competition
Even though it's a dangerous task – there are other boys who want to win the competition and will do anything to get Amir's kite – Hassan does it without hesitating
This act of bravery cements their friendship
However, it also creates a sense of indebtedness on Hassan's part
He feels that he owes Amir for always being there for him
This sense of indebtedness becomes important later on in the novel when Hassan is raped by Assef, a sadistic sociopath who belongs to the Taliban
Amir is present during the rape but does nothing to stop it
He is overcome by a sense of cowardice and feels that it is Hassan's duty to protect him, since he is the wealthier and more powerful friend
After the rape, Hassan leaves Amir's house and moves away with his family
This act of betrayal – Hassan's loyalty lies with his family, not Amir – is something that Amir cannot forgive
He feels guilty for not being able to protect Hassan and for not being there for him when he needed him the most
These feelings of guilt and betrayal haunt Amir throughout the novel and drive him to attempt to redeem himself
He does this first by rescuing Hassan's son, Sohrab, from Taliban captors
He also tries to make up for his past mistakes by risking his own life to save Sohrab from execution
In the end, Amir succeeds in redeeming himself. He faces his fears and does what he should have done all those years ago – he stands up for Hassan. Even though Hassan is no longer alive, Amir knows that he has finally forgiven himself and that their friendship has been resurrected.
After the Kite Runner

The Kite Runner was published in 2003 and became an instant bestseller. It has sold over 7 million copies worldwide and has been translated into over 70 languages.

The novel has been turned into a film, stage play, and opera. It has also been banned in some countries, including Afghanistan, because of its depiction of child abuse and sexual violence.

The Kite Runner was well-received by critics and readers alike. It is considered to be one of the most important works of Afghan literature.


The Kite Runner is a story about friendship, betrayal, and redemption. The relationship between Amir and Hassan is one of the most important relationships in the novel. It is a story of two friends who are divided by social conventions, but who are ultimately brought back together by their shared sense of loyalty and love.


The nature of the friendship between Amir and Hassan is one where Hassan is always loyal and supportive to Amir, no matter what. Hassan will do anything for Amir, even if it means putting himself in danger.

Over time, their relationship changes because Amir becomes more successful and begins to distance himself from Hassan. He starts to see Hassan as inferior and someone who is not worth his time.

Hassan's loyalty to Amir affects their friendship because it makes it difficult for Amir to forgive Hassan for what he did. Even though Hassan was only trying to help Amir, his actions ended up causing a lot of pain and suffering for both of them.

It is difficult for Amir to forgive Hassan because he feels like he can never trust Hassan again. He also feels guilty for all the pain that Hassan has gone through because of him.