Saturday, September 14, 2013

Fishbowl #4: Chapters 17 and 18 of The Kite Runner

Welcome to your fourth fishbowl!

A few reminders if you're looking for an A for the day:

(A) Bring at least one quotation and/or page reference into at least one of your responses.
 
(B) Explain your thinking thoughtfully and thoroughly (try to avoid the one-sentence response).

(C) Keep it professional, including the usage of proper grammar and spelling.

(D) Comment frequently from the beginning of the conversation to the end.


Remember also that you're welcome to get into a hotseat in the inner circle for a little while and earn some of your daily participation points there.


Enjoy!

108 comments:

  1. What will be the conflict when Amir is in Kabul and tries to kidnapp this little Hazara boy out of Afghanistan. From how they killed Hassan on pg 219 won't they have a similar ways of handling it with Sohradb.

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  2. Why did the author make Hassan die so brutally. On page 219 the killing is detailed. "So they took him to the street and ordered him to kneel and shot him in the back of the head."

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    1. The author nay have made Hasaan's death so gory to go along with the violence and injustice themes of this novel. Violence is a major theme and I think that Hassan's brutal death adds to the violence.

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    2. I think the author made his death so brutal because it was the "culture" of the Talibans. Obviously, the author would want to make it as "true" as it can be and make sure all the details are in it. I think that since the "culture" of the Talibans was that brutal, then it should be described that way.

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    3. An overarching theme in this book is violence. The use of violence shows us where important parts in the book are, it is important when Hassan is raped, it is important when Amir and Baba leave Kabul, and it is important when Hassan is killed.

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    4. I don't understand why nothing good ever happened to hassan because usually in most stories the good character will usually have something good happen to him but no he got rapped and shot in the head. Also I find it symbolic in a bad way that he got shot in the head and not in the chest or leg but a dome shot.

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    5. Adding in to Earl, power plays a big role in this book and violence is a way to show that power. When someone is hurt or gets hurt by another person, by other perspectives, the bully is the one who has more power over the victim. Rape and killing are one of the strongest ways to show power over someone and that's why the author chose to write it.

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    6. I agree with Earl, violence is a very strong recurring event and it has to have some representation. The event that happened to Hassan in chapter 2 was also another very violent event and scene. Also Afghanistan is a very corrupt and violent at this time so I think the violence represented in Hassan's death also has to do with the history of Afghanistan at this time.

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  3. Why didn't Baba just tell Amir and Hassan the truth at first? if he told the truth would Amir have made the mistake he did by betraying Hassan?

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    1. Probably not, but it was a source of shame for Baba. Not only did he sleep with a woman other than his wife, she was also a Hazara women, and if this became known, Baba's standing in Kabul would have lowered immensely.

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    2. I think that he may have made the same mistake. Amir would have the same fear even if they were brothers. Plus, they already had a brotherly bond to begin with so why would it change the outcome?

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  4. Okay so Hassan was actually Baba's son? How would they not know? Do you think Hassan's "Father" is lying about not knowing? I mean surely they would be able to tell the difference. How will this affect Amir and Soroyas' relationship?

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    1. I think that they all knew, they just didn't want to tell Amir and Hassan because it is an embarrassment to have given birth to a hazara. It might negatively affect their relationship because he is blood related to a hazara

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    2. One reason I think that Amir didn't know was because Baba made it very clear that being a thief was the biggest crime. Baba stole Amir trust and entire life away from him by lying about the past. If Baba acted as if Hassan was his son Amir would have questioned the relationship that he and Hassan had really had and Baba would have been the biggest thief of all. Baba never really tended to be wrong, and usually everything was Amir's fault so why would he own up to being not only a hypocrite but a thief as well.

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  5. Why would Amir not want to go through with helping Hassan's son? Wouldn't it make the most sense for him to immediately want to go along with this way of being good again?

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    1. I think seeing a part of Hassan will bring back painful memories of the past that Hassan and Amir have had. I also think that because of the dangers and violence occurring in Afghanistan Amir is scared most of all. His brother and best friend has been murdered in the place he once called home and I don't know if Amir is ready to go back and see how his home has changed and what it has become.

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    2. In my eyes Amir is scared because, he just lost his dad, his brother and is going to loose Rahim Kahn. Amir wants to be good and show people he means well but he is just scared and maybe doesn't want to get attached to somebody again and possibly loose them too. Another reason he may be scared to take care of Hassan's son is because he doesn't want to replace the kid that he can't have. But if I were in his shoes I would take Hassan's son in a heart beat.

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    3. In a way, I think it would have brought up too much pain for Amir knowing that he couldn't have a kid and Hassan could. I also think that he feels guilty for Hassan's death and going to pick up Sohrab would be just another reminder of Amir's guilt.

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    4. Amir is going through a phase of shock as we see through out chapter 17 and 18. I think Amir may not want to go because he feels like Rahim has been lying to him but he feels caught by what Rahim said to him on pg 221. " What I'm asking asking from you is to grant an old man his dying wish.

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    5. I think that by having this adoption, Amir would feel a huge burden over himself. Amir was probably thinking of the future when sorhab gets older. Amir wouldn't know how to tell truth to Sorhab because it would be too painful to tell. Thus adoption would bring a lot of emotional pain between Amir and Sorhab which is why he didn't want to go through with the adoption.

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  6. Why hasn't the government gotten involved in the violence and discrimination taking place in Afghanistan? Is there a certain point that someone will step up and realize that this has gone too far?

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    1. I wonder this too. The country of Afghanistan is so corrupt during this time and any group that attempts to take control is just adding to the violence and destruction happening in the country at this time.

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  7. I would say that Hassan can look over betrayal and see the good side inside of Amir and he wants to see his oldest friend and see how he turned out and hopefully rebuild their friendship from all those years ago.

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  8. On page 219 we learn that Hassan was shot in the back of the head by the Taliban for trying to protect the house.So what I want to know is what is the specific purpose of the Taliban?

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    1. The Taliban's main goal is to get rid of all the Hazaras because they are not true Muslims in their eyes, and they think they are giving their race a bad name.

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    2. The Taliban reminds me of Nazis and the Holocaust. Their purpose is to take away the people who are different and I feel like Hassan protecting the house was just an excuse for them to kill him. Because Hassan was doing no wrong, and being different of having a flaw is not wrong, there is nothing wrong with that. So, they took him protecting the house and used it as an excuse to kill him.

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    3. I think that it is to show that the Taliban's power. The Hazara's aren't like the Taliban's, they have little to no power unlike the Taliban's who have a lot of power at this point and it's their way of showing that they have more power over the Hazara's.

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  9. In the discussion the leaders asked how Hassan still was welcoming to Amir even after what Amir has done to Hassan. Well Hassan was always loyal to Amir and Hassan didn't care what happened to himself, just as long as Amir was ok.

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  10. Do you thing Baba had a bigger reason for not telling Amir that Hassan was his Brother? If Baba was still alive would Amir still trust him or would it change their relationship?

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    1. I think Amir would not trust Baba. If you were lied to throughout your whole life by your father then wouldn't you have some trust issues with him?

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    2. I think it would effect their relationship greatly. On page 225 Amir remembers baba saying "There is only one sin. And that sin is theft... when you lie, you steal someone's right to the truth." Becase Baba taught Amir this and the whole time he was lying to Amir about Hassan, Amir would lose a lot of respect for baba and wouldn't look up to him as much. The trust between them would be broken.

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  11. Sohrab will be hard to get from the Taliban because Sohrab is a Hazara and the Taliban think that all Hazara's are a mistake and deserve to be killed. I think this will make it challenging to get Sohrab back from them.

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  12. On Page 225 Amir lists a lot of moments from the past that he now sees in a new light. Are their any other moments from the beginning that make more sense now that we know Amir and Hassan are brothers?

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    1. Another moment from the beginning of the book that makes more sense is when Baba forgave Hassan for "stealing" Amir's birthday gifts. Baba just forgave him and I think in a way, Baba would not have been mad because Hassan was his son.

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  13. Was Hassan also told of the connection between him and Amir? How would Hassan view his selfless act of facing Assef and getting the kite?

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    1. I think that Hassan was told about the connection and relationship that he and Amir possessed because he had reached out to Amir, and based on the past Amir and Hassan had, I think Hassan had to have a good reason to reconnect with Amir. Also Hassan's reaction to the death of Baba seemed a little more personal and upsetting to Hassan than it would have been if he wasn't aware that Baba was his father.

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    2. I do not think Hassan ever knew. Based on how Hassan addressed his letters to Amir, on page215. Calling Amir 'agha' suggests that he still feels a master-servant relationship with Amir. Hassan is already so loyal to Amir that the selfless act of saving Hassan in the alley would have just made Hassan worship Amir.

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  14. I think that Hassan wants to see Amir even after everything happened because they both have had a special from when they were young. Ever since Hassan was young, he was always the nice and accepting one in the friendship. Knowing that Hassan has a very forgiving and understanding personality, he obviously would not want to throw their past friendship away over one mistake.

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  15. Hassan still wants to see Amir even though Amir treated him like trash yet Hassan is super loyal even when he was younger. Amir would like to see Hassan too because he hasn't seen him in years and may want to be apologetic to Hassan for everything Amir did to him.

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  16. Could Hassan have dodged his death? If the Taliban couldn't find him, how could that change his life? Why does Amir feel like it is his fault again?

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    1. This goes along to how selfless Hassan truly was. Throughout his entire life no matter what the situation Hassan always put other's first and was not concerned about himself.

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  17. Ever since Amir has made that mistake do you think that instead of taking responsibility for his mistake he has tried to do the right thing instead of the wrong thing and be a hero? Try and save people just like Baba?

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    1. I don't think Amir can makeup for what he did. Watching a friend get taken advantage of and just standing there is something you can't just make up for. I do think that Amir can change and take care of Hassan's son and love him and be a good person but I don't think he will ever be able to make up for not standing up for his friend when Hassan would have taken the bullet or taken what happened in the ally for Amir any day.

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  18. If Amir and Soraya can't have children, why don't they just take in Sohrab? I believe that would make Amir "good" and maybe they could be a happy family! Is it that Soraya still doesn't want to adopt? Or something deeper?

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    1. I think having Sohrab join Amirs family back in America would bring too many memories back for him. On page 221 Amir says "I have a wife in America, a home, a career, and a family. Kabul is a dangerous place, you know that," At this point Amir is worried about his own life. Later when he finds out Hassan is his brother, Amir is more willing to go. There is a bond between Sohrab and Amir that is now a factor. I think Soraya would be more willing to take in Sohrab, now that Amir and Sohrab are related.

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  19. I agree with what Nick said that Amir does owe Hassan a lot even though Hassan is dead, I think that Amir feels responsible for what happened and I think that he feels like he needs to take care of Sohrab.

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  20. This setting is staged in 2001 as showed on page 190. I think 9/11 will tie into this somehow. So my prediction is that Amir will adopt Sohrab and attempt to bring him to America, but before this happens 9/11 will happen and Amir and Sohrab won't be able to fly to America.

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    1. I like your thinking. I also believe that 9/11 will tie into this and will cause more trouble in America. I think that something will happen that shows Amir's cowardice again, or that something will happen and Amir will break through his cowardliness.

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  21. Another irony appears in this chapter, Amir realizes he is more like his father than he thought. They both betrayed their best friends. Baba had betrayed Ali, his closest friend since childhood, by sleeping with Sanaubar while she was with Ali. As Amir says, having sex with a man’s wife was the worst possible way an Afghan man could be dishonored. Pg.223 "Please think Amir jan, it was a shameful situation." Amir had also betrayed Hassan, the person he loved, by never coming to his aid in the Winter 1975.

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  22. Why didn't Baba tell Amir and Hassan that they were brothers? Why did he keep it a secret? How could Baba do that? Would that have changed the outcome in the alley in the winter of 1975? Would Amir have stood up for Hassan because they're blood brothers? Would Asseif even have done that to Hassan if he knew that Amir and Hassan were brothers and Hassan was not a Hazara?

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    1. Baba didn't tell Amir and Hassan that they were brothers because Sanaubar was Ali's wife and not Baba's. So Amir would then think less of Baba for stealing his right to the truth. Also the whole book would be very different if Baba hadn't lied to them. I think they would have been a lot closer than they were and I think that Amir would have treated Hassan more like an equal.

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    2. I think that Baba did not tell them because it was meant as a sort of gift to Ali. Baba felt bad that Ali was not fertile and could not have children, so he gave him the gift of a son, even if it was not his, it was at least his wife's son. I think that for this reason, the two boys have a very strange sort of brotherhood. They are half-brothers, raised by different parents but they both grew up together. I think that this relationship would be very similar to the relationship that Hassan and Amir already have. They love each other, not because they really appreciate each other, they love each other because they have to. I think that the relationship between the two would not change if they knew they were brothers, because they are different people who were not destined to be very close.

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  23. Why do you think that the Taliban actions are so similar to want happened in the Holocaust?

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    1. The Taliban is similar to the Holocaust because of the discrimination against a certain kind of person. In Afghanistan Hazaras remind me much of the Jews. During the Holocaust Hitler had ordered people to discriminate specifically towards the Jews, just like Afghans proceed to do to the Hazaras.

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    2. I think they had the same actions because the Taliban saw that is worked got what they wanted done faster. Both of these groups pretty much had the same goal so the Taliban used the same method.

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    3. The Taliban also want to get rid of a certain group of people. But their ways of killing are different than the Holocaust. A man had one idea, one bad idea. One idea to start it all, to wipe out a whole group just because of one idea.

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  24. What is the symbolism in all of the deaths that have occurred? Does this represent something?

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    1. I think there is definitely an symbol with in all of the death represented through out the book. Like on page 215 Amir is given that letter from Rahim of Hassan. Creating a symbol of dying with good memories and hopes.

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    2. In my opinion this is a symbol of regret and as if everything is falling apart. Amir wasn't a good friend to Hassan when they were kids and now it is catching up to him. It is sad to me that Hassan is the one that got killed because he was always the one who was there for everyone and would go above and beyond to help his friend and he never got that in return. I think that these deaths are almost showing Amir that you can't take anyone for granted and hopefully he will learn that and change himself for the new chapter in his life with his wife and now Hassan's son.

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    3. I think all the Death in this story represents no matter what happens in life you have to learn to move on and make the best of it. I think Amir does very well with this because he goes to college and then gets a job and now he is trying to start a life long relationship.He is also starting a family. It just shows that he is upset about losing those people but he does not let it mess with his life.

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    4. I think this represents the theme of living each day like its your last. You never know when you will see the people you love next so you always have to let them know that you love them and that you are thankful for them.

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  25. What will Amir's family back in America feel about the adoption of Sohrab?

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    1. I think that Amir's family back in America will be very accepting. Based on the past chapters, it seemed that their family has a very close relationship with each other after having everything figured out. Amir's wife is also very big in honesty, forgiveness, and understating. Because of that, I think that their family would be open to this adoption.

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    2. I think that since Ali and Hassan had a close relationship with Baba and Amir that Amir's family will welcome Sohrab with open arms. I think Amir feels obligated to take in Sohrab and to protect him because of Hassan and Amir's relationship back then.

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  26. Do you think that if Amir knew from the beginning that Hassan was his half brother that he would have done what he did in that alley or would he have stood up for his brother?

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    1. Yes, Amir would have treated his brother very differently. If Hassan was his brother, he would not have felt jealous about Baba's attention, and would not have had the sense of superiority when dealing with Hassan.

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  27. Baba would almost always stand up for others, even if they we're complete strangers. So why couldn't Amir stand up for others or himself? Usually if you're around that kind of influence, it rubs off on you, so why was Amir basically a coward?

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    1. Perhaps Amir subconsciously recognized the weakness that was present in Baba's failure to tell the truth about Hassan. He tried to emulate that weakness, and his lack of hardships early on in his life strengthened that cowardice.

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  28. Amir would probably be somewhat glad that the old Kabul has dissapeared because now that he knows that Hassan was his brother, it would cause the guilt of standing and doing nothing much worse. He began to hate his childhood home when Hassan was just a friend but if he knew he was his brother than he would never be able to stare at him in the eye. Which event, pass memories or the news that has been given to him recently would make it harder for Amir to go back?

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  29. On page 215 when the letter starts it says "Amir agha, with my deepest respects," We learned that agha is a word of respect, and Hassan is saying with his deepest respects. Do think after reading this that Hassan has forgiven Amir for what he did to him?

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  30. Was Hassan actually part of Amir's family? "How could I have been so blind? The signs had been there for me to see all along; they came flying back at me now: Baba hiring Dr. Kumar to fix Hassan's harelip. Baba never missing Hassan's birthday. ... Hassan's not going anywhere, He's staying right here with us, where he belongs." (page 225)

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  31. I think that Hassan still wants to see Amir because it has been so long and maybe he feels that Amir has changed. On page 218 in the note Hassan wrote to Amir he talks about how he wants Hassan to come back and see him because he is an old faithful friend. I also think that Hassan wants to see Amir because they are truly brothers to each other.

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  32. Do you think that Amir will keep Sohrab since he can not have a son and this son will be from his home and be like family to him because he was related to Hassan?

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    1. I think that Amir has to keep Sohrab. It is the only way to cure his guilt. Sohrab symbolizes Amir's childhood, his memories and his transgressions toward Hasssan. By raising Sohrab, Amir is repaying Hassan for his loyalty. In death, Hassan must have worried most about his family, including Amir. In order to truly be free from guilt, I would imagine that Amir must be sure that what worried Hassan in death is not a problem, by taking care of Sohrab, as well as himself.

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    2. I think he will save him because of all he owes to Hassan and since they are brothers. Amir will feel an obligation to take Sohrab because he is in the Taliban's possession and they will most likely just kill him because he was birthed form a Hazara women.

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  33. I don't see why Baba never stood up for hassan because even if it was on your friends wife you should still take care of the son YOU created and I don't see why Baba still never wanted Amir to hang out with hassan like in chapter six and seven when he won the kite tournament and they were celebrating he told him to move away from hassan?

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    1. I think Baba did not allow Hassan and Amir around each other because he was worried that they might find to many thing in common and then they might find out baba's secret that they are brothers.

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    2. I disagree because Baba forgave Hassan for "stealing" the money and the watch. That is standing up for someone because he had didn't offend Hassan he just left it alone. I think Baba just knew what happened and saw Amir not helping Hassan and told him to stay away so he couldn't get him into any more trouble.

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  34. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  35. Amir has grown a lot in the course of this book so do you think that the tone of the book has changed as Amir has gotten older?

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    1. I believe it has stayed the same because of all of the deaths that have occurred later on in this book. One bad event after another seems to be the repeating factor. The longer and longer Amir waits to confess his past and do something about it the worse and worse he is. He hasn't changed, and he hasn't done anything to change what has happened. But the past follows you and as Amir gets older the past continues to follow him and affect my view on Amir as a character in the book.

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  36. Does Amir feel incredibly guilty that Hassan was murdered by the Talibans? I mean, Amir never even got to apologize, although I'm sure Hassan would've forgiven him, or already has. It's just awful what happened to his brother.

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    1. Amir probably feels extremely devastated because most of what happened in their lives is because of Amir's actions. Amir decided to not defend Hassan ever, so Hassan left to Hazarajat and met his wife. Without that, Rahim Khan would have never gotten Hassan and Hassan therefore would never have been killed. So all in all, Amir was the cause of Hassan's death.

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  37. When Rahim Kahn was talking about Amir when he was younger, Rahim and Baba had a talk about Amir: "...a boy who won't stand up for himself becomes a man who can't stand up for anything.' Pg 221. This is more than true everywhere in the world. It was back then, it still is now. The real world is harsh and cruel and if you were weak growing up, and never figured out how to stand up for thyself then you will be an unsuccessful person.

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    1. I agree, it seems as Amir hasn't changed at all. He never went to find Hassan and apologize after all these years, and now he is having trouble saving his own brothers child.

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  38. I think that is a really good question but I want to add on to it? do you think that if Amir knew Hassan was his brother would he have died for him? Even if he didn't know would he die for Hassan?

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  39. Using any foreshadowing details embedded in the text do you infer that Amir will do something about the event in the alley that he let happen now that he knows the relationship he and Hassan possessed and now that he knows Hassan is dead?

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    1. I think he might because now that he is older and more mature I think he has the chance to stand up for someone he didnt stand up for the first time.

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    2. I am not sure about foreshadowing but I predict that he will find out that the man that shot hassan was assef and that Amir will do whatever he can to take care of Sohrab and that his wife and him will take great care of him.

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    3. I feel as if Amir will attempt to redeem himself by taking care of Sohrab. Amir screwed up royally in the alley and I think he will try to make a new legacy for himself.

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  40. What is your inference on the relationship Hassan's son and Amir will end up having?

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    1. I think Hassan's son and Amir are going to have a really good relationship and I think Amir is going to be more of the fatherly figure to Hassan's son because Amir had a special connection with Hassan and Amir will do anything they can do.

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    2. I think Amir and his son will have a very good relationship because Amir will be ab le to raise his son like how he wants so he can grow up to be a good man

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  41. How is Soraya effected by Amir's emotions? Amir is now most likely depressed because his father and half brother are dead. Does Amir feel more comforting by Soraya or more alone now that Hassan is gone.

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    1. Well obviously we haven't gotten to the point where Soraya and Amir are together again but I am inferring that with Amir taking in Sohrab will make him feel better about himself and his guilt with Hassan's death that he won't be as depressed as you'd think.

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  42. I think that Amir realizes that he is like his Father, because his father also betrayed his best friend, as Amir did. I think that Amir's opinions on his father have changed from him being such a great role model, when really he wasn't that great of a role model. I think that if Amir and Hassan knew that they were brothers the bad event in the alley in the winter of 1975 would have never happened, because I thought that Assief only hurt Hassan because he was a hazara.
    Also, on page 219, we find out that Hassan died protecting the house that they grew up in, and I was wondering if Amir would do the same thing, and if his decision would've been changed knowing that they were "blood brothers". I also wonder if Hassan's loyalty would've changed knowing that they were brothers, and that he wasn't his hazara.

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  43. Do you believe that Amir's actions would have differed in the winter of 1975 if he had known he was his brother and just just some ordinary Hazara? I raise this question because when Amir went back to Afghanistan to see Rahim Khan on page 221 he says "Kabul is a dangerous place, you know that, and you can't expect me to risk everything for..." We learn here after all these years Amir still is hesitant to help Hassan or his legacy. Had Amir known that he was his step nephew then or brother back in 1975 do you believe he would have been more willing?

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  44. I feel as if Amir is scared to go back to Kabul because his past has been haunting him all those years and in America he feels like he has finally escaped his past. When he got to Pakistan it was as if his whole past came rushing back and started Haunting him again. I think that if he adopts Sohrab he will feel like he can finally forgive himself for what he did to Hassan and fix what he did.

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  45. How does the view on the Taliban change through out these chapters? How did they gain so much power in Afghanistan?

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  46. Sohrab will probably be a constant reminder of the mistakes that he had made in the past. In the book Amir doesn't even think of how Sohrab will be raised in the orphanage and he even said, "Why me? why can't you pay someone here to go? I'll pay if it is a matter of money." which shows that Amir is to selfish and afraid of what has already happened. This is his only way to make up for what he did for Hassan and he almost passed it up due to his emotions.
    Sohrab will eventually show the qualities in Hassan that were great and Amir will finally feel like he has done good for Hassan.

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  47. Amir has just learned that Hassan is his step brother. Did this make Amirs feeling of same and guilt grow after the gained this knowledge ? What is the balance between guilt and knowledge?

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    1. I think this knowledge has made him feel more guilty. In chapter 18 Amir lists off all these events that would have turned out differently if he had known Amir was his brother.

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  48. Do you think that Hassan's mom will show up now that Hassan has passed away?

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  49. Why do people feel the need to be rid of others that are different, race or religion? The Talibans murdering thousands of Hazaras and Hitler with his followers murdered thousands of Jews. That is just plain awful. You should respect others opinions.

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  50. On page 219, Hassan wife runs out after Hassan is killed . Whas this her best choice ? Should she have to stayed with her boy? It must have been worth the risk to her

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  51. Amir will probably treat Sohrab with great care. Some parents find that it is best for a child to be given what they couldn't have and Amir hasn't taken too mauch lesson to how Baba looked at him.

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  52. I think that if Amir knew that he and Hassan were brothers then amir would've stepped in and helped Hassan. Part of the reason why Amir didn't help was because she thought that he was higher up than Hassan. If he knew that Hassan was his brother, then he would've had a sense of brotherly protection.

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  53. There is no doubt that there is a little bit of guilt pushing Amir to return to Kabul. As he leaves Rahim Khan, he wonders if the chain of events that happened after Amir pushed Hassan and Ali away from their family eventually leads to their deaths. He also wonders if Ali and Hassan stayed with him and his father if they would also be in America with a family of their own. So some of his actions here in this chapters are motivated by a small bit of guilt.

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