Study Guide

A Thousand Splendid Suns Power

By Khaled Hosseini

Power

For once, we have to agree with Kanye—no one man should have all that power. A Thousand Splendid Suns is filled with bad dudes who prey on the weak. For some, like Rasheed, this means using violence and manipulation to hold power over a few individuals. For others, like the Taliban, it's about keeping a whole country of people under your fist. In both instances, however, we see that power can be defeated. It certainly isn't easy, but the only thing that can defeat overwhelming power and violence is love.

Questions About Power

  1. How does Rasheed maintain a hold on Mariam for so long? How does she ultimately break free?
  2. Why does the Taliban focus on maintaining cultural control?
  3. How does Laila react to individuals or organizations having power over her?
  4. How do the people of Kabul, outside of the main characters, respond the overbearing power of the Taliban?

Chew on This

The novel suggests that power depends on instilling fear, whether of physical violence or emotional pain, in others.

In A Thousand Splendid Suns, the Taliban uses its moral power to prevent women from partaking in any degree of public life; this keeps them from speaking out against their oppression.