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Hosseini: The Kite Runner

22. Chapter 21: The Stoning

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About this Lecture


In this module, we read through the twenty-first chapter of the novel, focusing in particular on: (i) the character of Farid; (ii) the depths to which Afghan society has sunk under the Taliban; (iii) Amir’s memory of him and Hassan finding a turtle in the garden and painting it red; (iv) Amir’s encounter with the various symbols of his youth – Baba’s house, his old bedroom, the pomegranate tree, etc.; (v) the comic relief provide by ‘Mullah Nasruddin’ jokes, which heightens the horror of the scene that follows; and (vi) the importance of both crime (adultery) and punishment (stoning) in highlighting the nature of the Taliban regime.


In this course, Professor John McRae (University of Nottingham) explores Khalid Hosseini’s The Kite Runner. We begin with a broad introduction to the historical, political and literary context of the novel, before going through the whole novel chapter-by-chapter, providing close reading and detailed analysis, with commentary on character, plot, themes, motifs, language, symbolism and more.


John McRae is Special Professor of Language in Literature Studies and Teaching Associate in the School of English at Nottingham University, and holds Visiting Professorships in China, Malaysia, Spain and the USA. He is co-author of The Routledge History of Literature in English with Ron Carter, and also wrote The Language of Poetry, Literature with a Small 'l' and the first critical edition of Teleny by Oscar Wilde and others.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

McRae, J. (2021, January 13). Hosseini: The Kite Runner - Chapter 21: The Stoning [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

McRae, J. "Hosseini: The Kite Runner – Chapter 21: The Stoning." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 13 Jan 2021,