English 1H, Set 5
A father and son’s relationship is a bond that connects a child to his hero. For Amir, this could not be more opposite. Amir has a unique kind of relationship with his father Baba. For Amir, to get attention would be a great accomplishment, and praise, a life goal. Growing up in Afghanistan Amir and Hassan were best friends. Hassan’s family are servants to Amir’s but they also have a relationship that is more than that. Baba was known to be “more than human” or “Mr. Hurricane”, and Amir was just the opposite. Amir is constantly afraid to stick up for himself, or others. This puts a strain on his relationship with his father because Baba wants Amir to stand up for himself.
Amir is proud that Baba is his father, and admires him. Amir says that “I wanted everyone to see that he was my father, my Baba”. However, Baba does not feel the same way about Amir. He feels that Amir is a coward and does not live up to what he should be, as he is his son. Baba says that “If I hadn’t seen the doctor pull him out of my wife with my own eyes, I’d never believe he’s my son”. These two drastically different views on being father and son cause the distance between Amir and Baba. Amir feels that he has to prove that he can be worthy of Baba and his love and respect, and also that in Baba’s eyes he is the black sheep of the family.
Amir’s stained relationship with Baba goes deeper than the disappointment from Baba. Amir not seeing eye to eye with Baba is a consequence of Amir’s jealousy of Hassan and how Baba supposedly favors him. Amir shows this disapproval of Hassan’s relationship with Baba when he says, “If I changed my mind and asked for a bigger and fancier kite, Baba would buy it for me—but then he’d buy it for Hassan too. Sometimes I wished he wouldn’t do that. Wished he’d let me be the favorite.” Amir feels as though he is superior over Hassan and should be treated as so, especially by his father. He feels as though since he is Baba’s son Hassan should not be treated in the same manor. He wants to feel special and gain his father’s approval, motivating his desire for acceptance. He believes in order to gain this acceptance and approval he needed to show Baba the kite after he won the tournament. He wanted it to be so he and only he had done something worthy of Baba and leaves Hassan out to dry when Assef rapes Hassan. He says that “Maybe Hassan was the price I had to pay, the lamb I had to slay, to win Baba.”