Thursday, 9 January 2014

GINS Post 5

Much like Canada, Afghanistan has a constitution regarding the basic human rights of its citizens. The Constitution of Afghanistan is the supreme law of the state of Afghanistan that legally shapes the relationship between the Afghan government and Afghan citizens. The first Afghan constitution was established 1890s and was followed by the 1923 version. The current Afghan constitution was approved and put in place in January 2004. It evolved out of the Afghan Constitution Commission mandated by the Bonn Agreement.

The Basics of Afghanistan’s Present Day Rights

Fundamental Freedoms:

  •  Islam is the sacred and state religion
  •  Followers of other religion are “free to exercise their faith and perform their religious     rites” within the limits of the law

Civil and Human Rights:

  •  Citizens are guaranteed the right to life and liberty, to privacy, or peaceful assembly, torture and of expression of speech
  •  If accused of a crime, citizens hold the right to be informed of the charges, to representation by an advocate, and to presumption of innocence
  •  They have the right to express thoughts through many forms

“Every Afghan shall have the right to express thoughts through speech, writing, illustrations as well as other means in accordance with provisions of this constitution.” (Article 34)

  • Pashto and Dari are the official languages, and in addition any other languages will be considered “the third official language” in areas where they are spoken by a majority

As the constitution states, it aims to “foster and develop all languages of Afghanistan.” (Article 16)

In The Kite Runner, numerous historical events in Afghanistan were not mentioned in plot. However quite a few of the dates ironically matched up. I believe this was an intentional choice of author so he would be able to convey when a significant event was taking place in history by writing a significant event within the novel that help the same date. For example, in 1988, Amir has his first novel published. It is a very joyous occurrence in his life, and it is the same year the Soviet Union withdraw from Afghanistan. More evidence of this is how in 2002 two very positive events occur. In the novel, Amir and Sohrab flies the kite, and the time same year in history, Afghanistan adopts a new constitution with three-branch government.

GINS Post 4

My novel, The Kite Runner, regards the way Afghanistan once was, before the Soviet Union invaded, and how the country changed forever afterwards. Before the harsh winter of December 1979, the economy in Afghanistan was flourishing. In the 1930s, Afghanistan advanced and embarked on an economic development program. They founded banks, expanded primary, secondary, and technical schooling, instituted a university, and pushed students toward a good academic future. With these new progresses, a large population to fulfill jobs of all sorts and a strong country-wide work ethic, Afghan-Shia families of all social classes were thriving. Unfortunately, this prosper did not go for Hazara’s. All Hazara people could do is simply stand by helplessly and pray they would be taken under the wing of a considerate Shia family; like Hasan and Ali had been with Amir and Baba. Since the Shia were blooming, someone had to pay the price. When one takes so much, there will be less for another. However, the invasion disrupted their economic patterns. With loss of labour and a disturbance in trade and transport, Afghanistan was struggling to keep their once stable economy standing.
Another connection I found between my novel and economic systems was how contrastive the economy as a whole was for Amir and his father when they moved to America. Although it has not yet been established in the novel, I assume that the economy there was not as market as the United State’s market economy. In America Baba had neither the financial leverage nor the social stature he once had back in Afghanistan. For Amir’s birthday every year, back in Afghanistan, he would receive mountains and mountains of gifts he looked at once and did not give a second glance at. Ever since they moved to California, Amir treasures even the smallest of things, like the hot cup of coffee that kissed his lips every sunday afternoon at the market.