In the fairy tale Saboor tells his children, an evil demon—a div—orders a farmer, Baba Ayub, to sacrifice one of his children. Baba Ayub is then forced to make the agonizing choice to give away his favorite son, Qais. In a sense, the div symbolizes the cruel, uncaring universe—the thing that forces human beings to make difficult choices, some of which are impossible to live with. If the “universe” in And the Mountains Echoed is a character, it is a volatile, cruel, unpredictable, and ultimately indifferent character—and the presence of the div is the first sign that this is the case.
And the Mountains Echoed
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The timeline below shows where the symbol The Div appears in And the Mountains Echoed. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.