The theme of violence is explored in many parts of the Kite Runner. The novel is based upon a boy named Hassan (a servant boy) and Amir who is Hassan’s best friend, and master’s son. The theme of violence begins when Amir and Hassan enter Afghanistan’s annual kite-fighting tournament. This is when boys from all around battle kites by covering the strings in broken glass.

When one of the strings from the kites are cut, the losing kite flies loose, and boys called kite runners chase the kite across the city until it falls. Amir was the kite flyer, and Hassan was the kite runner. Amir and Hassan were successful and won the competition, so Hassan, being the Kite Runner had to go and run the kite. Hassan ran into Assef (had disagreement before) and Hassan was raped by him. Amir was there watching the whole time, but pretended as though he did not see. This was the first violent act in the novel.

The activity of kite fighting is violent by itself. The kite’s battle and so do the kids who fly them. The string, which is covered in ground glass, carves deep gashes into the fliers' hands as they try to cut each other down, and once kites fall out of the sky, the kite runners retrieve them. In its violence, kite fighting represents the conflicts that rage Afghanistan nearly throughout the course of the novel.

For many years, Amir feels as though he and Hassan are in a competition for Baba's love. (Their Baba is their father) After the rape, Hassan's very existence makes Amir mad because it reminds him of his cowardice. Despite all this, when the boys fly kites together, they are on the same team. They are more like brothers then than perhaps any other time, because the activity is somewhat mutual. It allows them to momentarily escape their differences and the fact that Hassan is a Hazara and lets them enjoy a shared sense of freedom.