Interpretive Essay

1639 words 7 pages
A Real Dominican Man
In The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, the reader is led through the novel with a lot of uncertain thoughts and questions about the main characters, one in particular Oscar Wao. When I first started working on the assignment my topic was what and who is a real Dominican man? What characteristics does a true Dominican man have? Why isn’t Oscar like all the other Dominican Men? I found it strange that as I began to look through passages I was finding more of what the opposite of a real Dominican man was. The narrator seemed to mostly use the main character Oscar Wao to show the good and bad in Dominican man. In the first chapter we see that progression of Oscar Wao from being a “typical” Dominican man
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This next specific passage takes the reader back to represent when Oscar is now much older, a sophomore in high school and is soon realizing that he is not longer in his “Golden Age” but basically the complete opposite of what he is use to. I discovered a passage that explains Oscars life throughout high school, sophomore year in particular; “ Sophomore year Oscar found himself weighing in at a whopping 245 and it had become clear to everybody, especially his family, that he’s become the neighborhood pariguayo”(Diaz 19). When I first picked the topic I wanted to know who is a Dominican, but then when I began looking at passages and things I was finding the opposite of what a normal Dominican man is like. Yunior was describing Oscar as a fat, hairy, nerdy boy whereas most of the “typical” Dominican man seemed to be described as the complete opposite of that. In this specific passage that I found the narrator does a good job in describing what most people look to as a “typical” Dominican Man. One question that comes to mind though is who are the “most people” in the novel? When I was playing around with this sentence I realized that the narrator uses the word “normal” and “typical” a lot to describe certain characters. The narrator also uses the Spanish term “parigyayo”, instead of using an English word such as “loser”. Readers may have thought of the passage differently if


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