, The theme of Khaled Hosseini's novel A Thousand Splendid Suns is oppression. The characters in the novel try to retain hope while dealing with political and personal oppression. Specifically, the main characters, Marium and Laila. Marium is oppressed by many individuals that are a major aspect of her life. Beginning with the person that birth her; her mother. After her mother dies she's oppressed by her father and his wives, then the man whom she is forced to marry. encouraged and motivated to become more within life. She's shown a different rout, she's given a different perspective of life from her father. Once he dies, she feels as though she has no other choice but to marry and marries Jalil, who oppresses her.
Theme: Endurance of Oppression
A Thousand Splendid Suns
By: Khaled Hosseini
1. "There is only one, only one skill a woman like you and me needs in life, and they don't teach it in school. Look at me...only one skill. And it's this: tahamul. Endure." 2. "No matter. The point is, I am your husband now, and it falls on me to guard not only your honor but ours, yes, our nang and namoos. That is the husband's burden" (Hosseini223).
This scene foreshadows the oppression of women by men. A man always finds a way to make any problem a woman's fault. Men are in control and consider themselves superior to women; so men can easily blame women for anything that goes wrong and escape punishment.
" You know what he told his wives by way of defense? That I forced myself on him. That it was my fault. Didi? You see? That is what it means to be a woman in this world." Nana put down the bowl of chicken feed. She lifted Marium's chin with a finger. "Look at me, Marium." Nana said, "Learn this now and learn it well, my daughter: Like a compass needle that points north, a man's accusing finger always finds a woman. Always. You remember that, Marium" (Hosseini7).
1. When Laila says "everybody wants Jack" to come and save them she is referring to Jack from the "Titanic". Kabul itself is a sinking ship and its people are terrified because they see the path that their economy is going down. The war and drought is getting worse and the people are hoping that someone would come and save them. 2. When Raheed gives Marium a burqa it symbolizes his control he will have over her in the future.
"Mostly, they live in the richer parts of Kabul. I'll take you there. You'll see. But they're here too, Marium, in this very neighborhood, these soft men. There's a teacher living down the street, Hakim is his name, and I see his wife Fariba all the time walking the streets alone with nothing on her head but a scarf. It embarrasses me, frankly, to see a man who's lost control of his wife." "But I'm a different breed of man, Marium. Where I come from, one wrong look, one improper word, and blood is spilled. Where I come from, a woman's face is her husband's business only. I want you to remember that. Do you understand?" (Hosseini70).
In this scene Rasheed introduced the use of the burqa as a rule to Marium. He told Marium that some women are free only because of the mentality of the women's husbands. This scene is evidence that women are oppressed by men. Men can wear whatever they want, while women are forced to dress fully clothed head to toe.