What I Learned About the Afghan Society from the Heartbreaking Novel A Thousand Splendid Suns

April 27, 2022 by Essay Writer

A Thousand Splendid Suns (384 pages) is an extremely heartbreaking yet inspirational novel that accentuates the hardships several Afghan women suffered as a result of the abusive control of the Taliban and the war of Afghanistan. This unforgettable novel was written in 2007 by an Afghan born author named Khaled Hosseini. Afghanistan had a swiftly expanding economy and a rapidly modernizing infrastructure.

It was beginning to change from a traditional and rural society to one that was more industrial and modern. However, everything changed when The Taliban people took over Afghanistan’s government and terrorized Afghanistan streets as a perverted attempt to unify the country. The Taliban was comprised of members from the Pashtun tribe, who were strongly anti-western, and imposed many restrictions on women and their personal lives such as clothing, entertainment, and social interactions.

In “A Thousand Splendid Suns” Hosseini highlights the restrictions that Afghan women endured by illustrating the various obstacles our protagonists faced due to the oppressive men in their lives. Our first protagonist is a little girl named Mariam who is an illegitimate child, and struggles from the infamy caused by her birth. Mariam’s father Jalil, is an extremely wealthy businessman in Heret while her mother is an impoverished maid. Mariam’s mother degrades Mariam’s self worth by constantly reminding her that she was never supposed to be born and that she was a mistake. On the other hand, Laila, our second protagonist is born a generation later as a wealthy girl with a “21st century” father who encourages Laila to get an education and grow up to be a strong and brave women. Laila’s story explores lots of controversial topics such as premarital sex and the idea of men and women as equals.

Mariam and Laila’s lives intersect years later when Laila is forced to accept a marriage proposal from Rasheed, Mariam’s husband. As the novel progresses, Laila and Mariam face several setbacks, testing their relationship and their courage to stand up for themselves in an unfair world. Their inspirational story shows the reader that even when life seems cruel, love and compassion can overcome anything.

“A Thousand Splendid Suns” is definitely a splendid read, filled with strong emotions and an invigorating plot. I have to admit this is certainly one of the top ten best books I have ever read and would rate it a nine out of a ten. Although the beginning of the novel may seem dull and boring, Hosseini’s vivid descriptions constantly keep the reader coming back for more. The author’s personal knowledge and experiences in Afghanistan enable him to write a very compelling story that makes the reader feel like they’re in Afghanistan themselves.

This book has enhanced my knowledge of Afghan culture and the country itself as every single page of the novel is oozing with rich history and facts about Afghanistan. In conclusion, I would absolutely recommend this novel to anyone who is yearning for an unforgettable experience and wouldn’t mind learning more about underprivileged women in developing countries.

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