Immigration in the Kite Runner

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There are many challenges that immigrants must face when they move to a new foreign country, which in turn leads them to experiencing various hardships. After applying and, hopefully, being accepted into a country such as Canada, one of the biggest challenges that they face is language barriers. Learning to communicate with other people, who do not know your own mother tongue, is very difficult and stressful. By choice, some immigrants decide, or are forced to take ESL classes in order to communicate effectively to others of their needs, want and desires.

Similar to this, after two years of living in America, Baba found himself in a dispute with an Asian couple that own a store in which he frequented. The escalating argument, and frustration that Baba felt at not being able to speak to them in English (mostly because he was too stubborn to enroll in ESL classes in the first place), led to Amir, who by then fluently spoke English, to interpret for his father to resolve the issue (Hosseini 134-135).

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Evidently, problems that accompany people, who unfortunately must experience having a language barrier, can leave them feeling overwhelmed and frustrated at their own inability to hold a conversation with someone else. Another barrier that immigrants experience is health care barriers. When immigrants first enter the country they do not have health care. Some countries like Canada to provide certain skills within the economy, so that they allow them into the country, allowing them low-income housing and social assistance benefits, also known as welfare especially if they are refugees.

The refugees are from war torn countries dealing with guerrilla armies, or countries that have experienced devastating natural disasters such as floods. However, those immigrants who simply move to a new country to make up a better life for their family are not offered many forms of social assistance, as shown by the Baba and Amir’s eligibility officer. Regardless, Baba has too much pride to accept such ‘free money’, and says “I work always.

In Afghanistan I work, in America I work” (Hosseini 138). For people like them, they must pay up front for health care bills and for food. Opposite to Canada, other governments do not always offer to give newcomers any financial support, and the immigrants will be expected to meet their own financial needs. Social and Cultural barriers would be considered a third struggle for foreigners. Many countries have different traditions that they follow.

Do to these differences, people have to adapt to changes to show consideration of the customs and religious beliefs of others. Furthermore, when people immigrate, there must be a blending of cultures and rules that they have to abide by in the new country. For Baba and Amir, during the time they were in America, they had to wait for their visa, and begin interacting with both other Afghans, through the supermarket and wedding, and Americans to meet their basic needs.

This then allows them to successfully immerse themselves into their new lives, while still retaining their own culture. This can lead them to eventually getting well-paying jobs, such as what happened to Amir with his publishing agency (Hosseini 193), while being able to socialize with other people who live in their community. Overall, with the many challenges immigrants face, in order for them to be successful, they must be willing to endure in struggles, and make sacrifices for their family, like Baba had done for Amir.

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Immigration in the Kite Runner. (2017, Jan 21). Retrieved from

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