The Role Of Women In Hosseini's 'A Thousand Splendid Suns'

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A) The hijab/burqa is often used as a symbol for women’s behavior. In Hosseini’s A Thousand Splendid Suns, one of the large ways that women present themselves is through the hijab and much of their appearance is dependent on it. Most of the women are not expected to go through higher education so the way they are seen is much more reliant on their aesthetic value rather than their intellectual value. On page 22, when Jalil visited, Mariam noticed that “Nana was subdued and mannerly.” The words “subdued” and “mannerly” are often associated with the submissive role that many of these women have forced upon them in their society. They are expected to look nice, wear their “best hijab”, act respectfully and cover their flaws. Nana was seen…show more content…
Long and descriptive expressions are used in more peaceful, happier settings. In scenes of abuse, he uses short, repetitive syntax to convey suspense and fear in the characters thoughts. On pages 346 and 347, Rasheed severely beats the women because Laila had spoken to Tariq. Mariam, although she is scared, cannot let Laila get hurt the way she had in the past. She saw “fingers clawing at Rasheed’s face,” but it wasn’t until moments later that she realized the “fingers were hers” (346). Mariam had been subjected to his abuse long before Laila came along and never had anyone to fight for her. Because she is seeing it happen in front of her eyes, she reacts without any fear of consequences and completely on instinct to protect Laila. When Rasheed turns his attacks to her, Mariam questions herself and her actions to try to understand what she did to deserve his anger. The questions start out as full sentences, but shorten to adjectives question whether she was “discreditable” or “vulgar.” The questions changed from to self depreciation to incredulity and disbelief when she realized that she had done everything right and still wasn’t enough to save her from that reality. She realized that she did not deserve “his malice, his continual assaults,” she had “given this man her youth,” “fed him, and his friends, cleaned up after him dutifully.” Mariam finally registered that no matter what she did, this would always
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