Verbal Abuse in The Kite Runner

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 506 |

Page: 1|

3 min read

Published: Mar 16, 2024

Words: 506|Page: 1|3 min read

Published: Mar 16, 2024

Verbal abuse is a prevalent theme in Khaled Hosseini's novel, The Kite Runner. The characters in the novel are subjected to various forms of verbal abuse, which significantly impacts their relationships and actions. Verbal abuse is a form of emotional violence that can have long-lasting effects on individuals, affecting their self-esteem, mental health, and overall well-being. In The Kite Runner, verbal abuse is portrayed through the interactions between characters, highlighting the destructive nature of words and the power they hold in shaping relationships. This essay will explore the instances of verbal abuse in The Kite Runner and analyze their impact on the characters involved.

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Examples of Verbal Abuse

One of the most prominent examples of verbal abuse in The Kite Runner is the relationship between Amir and his father, Baba. Throughout the novel, Baba constantly belittles and criticizes Amir, making him feel inadequate and unworthy of his father's love and approval. Baba's hurtful words have a profound impact on Amir, shaping his self-image and influencing his actions. For instance, Baba frequently compares Amir to Hassan, his loyal servant and friend, highlighting Amir's shortcomings and failures. This constant comparison not only fuels Amir's jealousy and resentment towards Hassan but also erodes his self-confidence and sense of self-worth. As a result, Amir seeks validation and approval from his father through various means, such as winning the kite-fighting tournament, in an attempt to prove his worthiness. However, Baba's verbal abuse continues to haunt Amir, causing him to carry the burden of his father's disapproval throughout his life.

Another significant example of verbal abuse in The Kite Runner is the relationship between Hassan and Assef. Assef, a bully and a symbol of evil in the novel, verbally abuses Hassan, calling him derogatory names and taunting him for his Hazara heritage. Assef's verbal attacks not only degrade Hassan but also dehumanize him, reinforcing the power dynamics between the two characters. Hassan, being a loyal and kind-hearted individual, internalizes Assef's hurtful words, believing that he is inferior and unworthy of respect. This internalized sense of shame and worthlessness ultimately leads to Hassan's tragic fate, as he is unable to stand up for himself and defend his dignity. Assef's verbal abuse serves as a catalyst for the physical violence that he inflicts on Hassan, illustrating the interconnectedness of verbal and physical abuse in perpetuating cycles of harm and trauma.

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Verbal abuse is a pervasive theme in The Kite Runner, highlighting the destructive power of words in shaping relationships and influencing individual behavior. The characters in the novel are deeply affected by verbal abuse, experiencing feelings of inadequacy, shame, and worthlessness as a result of hurtful words. The impact of verbal abuse is evident in the relationships between characters, such as Amir and Baba, and Hassan and Assef, demonstrating the lasting effects of emotional violence on individuals. Through its portrayal of verbal abuse, The Kite Runner sheds light on the importance of communication and empathy in fostering healthy and respectful relationships, emphasizing the need to break the cycle of abuse and create a more compassionate and understanding society.

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Dr. Oliver Johnson

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Verbal Abuse in The Kite Runner. (2024, March 15). GradesFixer. Retrieved June 21, 2024, from
“Verbal Abuse in The Kite Runner.” GradesFixer, 15 Mar. 2024,
Verbal Abuse in The Kite Runner. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 21 Jun. 2024].
Verbal Abuse in The Kite Runner [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Mar 15 [cited 2024 Jun 21]. Available from:
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