The Kite Runner’ taps into current global issues

The Kite Runner taps into current global issues

by Melissa FathStaff Writer

A display has been set up in Dunn Library about the Liberal Arts Seminar book, “The Kite Runner,” for this year’s incoming freshmen.

Serials Librarian Liz Grimsbo set up the display, decorating it with an old red kite and a display of information and links telling what kite-running is.

For those who have never read the book, the story narrates the childhood of a boy growing up in Afghanistan with his father, and Rahim, his best friend and servant. As childhood playmates, the two boys form a strong brotherly bond, but as time goes on, they are separated due to economic, social, and political reasons.

The two boys later discover another bond. Then, when Amir and his father are forced to flee to America for their own safety, they are forced to transform themselves to fit the new American way of life.

According to Jan Everhart, Lilly Initiative director and assistant professor of religion, each year suggestions for the following year’s book are posted on an online poll, where faculty and staff vote for their favorites among a list. After Christmas break, a group of four-to-five faculty members, 12 students, and one admissions counselor meet to discuss the LAS book for the next year.

Grimsbo really enjoyed reading this year’s book and what it taught her.

“It gave me some insight about how it feels for someone to move from a different culture to another,” Grimsbo said. “This year’s LAS book has definitely been a success, not only due to its story plot, but because of the many issues and cultural perspectives it surrounds.”

Professor of English Nancy St. Clair is happy with the book choice this year because of the relatable circumstances it presents.

“[It] taps into current events and very realistic situations,” St. Clair said.

Grimsbo also agrees that the current events happening in the world have made the book even more interesting.

“The Kite Runner” display provides information about the journey that many face when coming to the United States. In the past year alone, 702,589 persons have become naturalized citizens and 1,266,264 legal permanent residents.

Freshmen have found the ability to relate to this idea of adjustment to a new lifestyle, specifically as they transition into college life.

“It’s a different world because you don’t know anybody,” freshman Charlotte Martin said.

The popularity of “The Kite Runner” is moving beyond the bookshelves and the campus, heading to the big screen. Paramount is now filming the book into a movie, starring Shawn Taub as Rahim Kahn and Kalid Abdalla as Amir. It is to be released on Nov. 2.