The novel shows Emir feeling shame wrought the whole novel as one bad decision as a child begins to haunt him forever trying to destroy him emotionally. Emir looks back to the time in his life where he watched his best friend and servant get raped whilst he does nothing about it. He holds on to this regret forever as his shame overwhelms him. When he sees Safes raping Hosannas, Emir just stands there watching doing nothing about it then he “ran because I’m a coward. I was afraid of Safes and what he would do to me”.
Because of this situation Emir felt guilt as “the thing with Hosannas was because he was so goddamn pure, you always felt like a phony around him”. Emir was responsible for All and Hosannas moving out of their house as Emir framed Hosannas to look like he was stealing despite the fact that was not like Hosannas at all this was because Baby once told Emir that theft was the only sin. Because of Emir making Hosannas move out, the brothers never got to see each other ever again and every time Emir heard Hessian’s name he tried to ignore it but deep down the shame was still following him everywhere as it was such a destructive force.
Baby felt shameful for sleeping with All wife and making her pregnant and when she ran away Baby lived with his son, Hosannas, although no one would ever know hat it was his as Hosannas was a Hazard and “all he (Baby) had back then was his honor and if people talked…. We couldn’t tell anyone”. Due to Baby constantly feeling shameful about everything Hosannas does he tries to redeem himself to cover the shame felt. He does this by building an orphanage and constantly donating to the poor although nothing can ever redeem him fully for the sin he did.
He tries to teach Emir about how “there is only one sin, theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft, when you cheat you steal the right to fairness” as Baby does not want Emir to be in the same situation as IM feeling shameful for what he did in the past as it constantly holds him back. When Emir finds out about the situation he states “how could you hide this from me” although everyone did as “it was a shameful situation, people would talk”. This shows how due to Baby sleeping with his servants wife the shame holds him back forever.
Sorry shows shame in the novel for running off with an Afghan man in America disobeying her parents. The relationship with the man only lasted a month before she came back to her family. When she came home “l saw my mother had had a stroke, the right side of her face as paralyses and… L felt so guilty” as she realized this was brought on by her mother’s stress of her leaving. This shame created manages to hold her back from dating other men as she regrets the past so much.
Sorry shows guilt when planning on marrying Emir as he does not know about her past so when Sorry rings Emir to tell him she feels ashamed for what she has done although Emir helps pull her through as he believes “how could I, of all people, chastise someone for their past? ” Sorry has always felt this shame hold her back as her parents were so ashamed although when she tells Emir he was surprised by how easily he took it, not knowing everything he was holding back which shows how shame can be such a destructive force.
The novel The Kite Runner by Chalked Hussein shows various ways that shame can be a destructive force holding you back as Emir shows shame for running away whilst Hosannas was getting raped then framing him for theft as he knew theft is the only sin. Baby felt shameful for sleeping with All life then watching his own son grow up without anyone knowing Hosannas was actually his and Sorry running off with an Afghan man in America causing so much stress on her mother than she had a stroke.