Guilt can drive people to the ground. It can ruin ones life from top to bottom. Some people spend their whole life being guilty and they lose sight of what is really important in life. They spend way too much time trying to redeem themselves and it is in their conscious forever. In the case of Amir, he spends his entire childhood and midlife trying to redeem himself. He feels guilty for many reasons and all of his struggles in the novel are because of his feelings of guilt.
Guilt and redemption are what drive this novel. Guilt starts for Amir at the very beginning of his life.
When he Amir is born, his mother, the love of Baba’s life, is killed during birth. Amir always feels guilty for this and feels like Baba does not like him as much. This guilt fuels the fire for the rest of Amir’s childhood. He is always trying to prove himself to Baba.
He even feels guilty when he cries at the match of buzkashi. He thinks that he embarrassed Baba. He also overhears Baba telling Rahim Khan that he thinks Amir is weak and thinks that he will become a man who can’t stand up for anything. Because of this, Amir wants so badly to redeem himself to Baba.
He becomes to resent Hassan too because Baba respects Hassan. Amir thinks bad thoughts about Hassan and starts to distant himself from him. Amir’s constant desire for redemption with Baba leads to even more guilt. Amir is about to win the kite running tournament. He cut down the last kite and Hassan is running to go get it. Amir finds Hassan in the alleyway being beaten and raped by some boys. Amir has a chance to stop it but he wants the blue kite so badly so he can finally redeem himself to Baba so he lets Hassan get raped. However, this leads to the ultimate guilt.
Amir can never stop thinking about it. He did the wrong thing. He stops talking to Hassan entirely and gets him kicked out of the house. He can’t stand to look at Hassan anymore. The guilt is too much. This guilt stays with Hassan for the rest of the novel. Amir had been living with his guilt for decades now. He was living in San Francisco with his wife. He had never spoken to anybody about the events that had happened that made him feel so guilty. The guilt was killing him. He finally received a call from Rahim Khan near the end of Khan’s life. Amir was given a chance to finally redeem himself.
Khan told Amir that he had to rescue Hassan’s son, Sohrab from an orphanage in Kabul. Kabul at the time was a scary city run by the Taliban. Amir didn’t want to do it but Khan convinces him too. It was finally Amir’s chance to get rid of all the guilt that he had pint up inside of him. Amir had to risk his own life to save the life of boy he did not even know. In life, I think anybody can redeem themselves. If someone truly is sorry for what they did, then the can atone for what they did. God does the same thing with confession. Even mass murderers can have redemption in God’s eyes.
Why can’t anybody else have redemption? Rahim Khan says in the novel, “True redemption is when guilt leads to good. ” If somebody atones for their sins and makes them right, then they have reached redemption. So yes, I do believe that Amir has redeemed himself in this story. His guilt leads to him saving a boys life. He risks his life because he finally wants to do the right thing. He ends up adopting the boy and no longer feels guilty. I think that Hassan would have been proud of Amir and would have forgiven him if he were alive. Amir reached redemption by getting over his guilt and doing the right thing.