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The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao Essay

The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao

In Junot Diaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, he is telling the story of a Dominican family but mainly about the son, Oscar de Leon. The book opens with the story of Oscar as a child and him having two girlfriends at the same time. The older people in town see him as a ladies man and encourage him. The boy and the two girls all break up and his life seemed to be on a steady decline since then. He grows up to become a nerdy, fat, and awkward adolescence with few friends and even less interest from girls. This phase persists throughout his life and he never develops out of the nerdy boy he was as a child. The Dominican Republic was a hostile and poor place during the time of the novel. The dictator Trujillo controls the lives of the people in the country. This influenced the de Leon family’s present and future. Diaz develops the story by using the superstition, the cane field, and male dominance of the Dominican men
In The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao family is a strong aspect that influences the characters decisions and actions. Oscar is the main character who majority of the book follows through his short life. His sister is Lola, who parts of the book also follow in order to gain access into their family story. Beli is his mother, who is a feared and respected woman in their community. The narrator and boyfriend of Lola is Yunior. He meets Oscar in college and lives with him. La Inca is Beli’s mother, she adopted Beli at the age of nine and raised her as her own. The Gangster is a man Beli meets and falls in love with at an early age. He causes trouble in her life from her family and his own family that he never said he had.
In the novel there is a curse called the fuku. The people of the Dominican Republic believe strongly in the curse. It is said to be what will bring their family bad luck in their daily life and never allow them to gain happiness. In the prologue the narrator is explaining how he does not believe in it but he is not taking the chance and ruining his own life. The characters, whose heritage comes from the Dominican Republic, would blame anything on the fuku from something as simple as a cold to something as grandiose death. The main character of the novel is the epitome of the fuku curse. Oscar was luckless throughout his life and never gained any real advancement in life. During the span of his life he never had a girlfriend or found love which was what he was searching for the most. This came from the mistake of his early childhood of him having two girlfriends at the same time. From the time he hit puberty till his death he seemed to be cursed with a string of bad luck. Lola also possessed the curse with her luck with men. She could never find someone who made her happy and kept making the same mistakes in her life. She was a stubborn woman her whole life and this was not seen as the most desirable quality in women by the men from the Dominican Republic at the time. Men would often love her for her looks and...

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List of essays, alphabetical by author


Jordan Baker, "Between Worlds"
Ryan Ferries, "Oscar's Half-Empty Glass"
Devin Heck, "The Feminist Side"

Kara Heiser, "Dominican Roots of Male Dominance"
Amanda Laager, "Obedience"
Hollie Logsdon, "Manic Repression"
Nicole Moore, "Depression of Masculinity"

Josh Sowa, "Tricks of the Depressive Mind"

Tessa Spencer, "When It Comes to Love, You're Fukúed"
Mackenzie VanBeest, "Dueling Masculinities"

Information regarding the essays


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“The only way out is in. And that’s what I guess these stories are all about.” –Lola de León