Words of the Wao
In the novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, the author Junior Diaz paints the picture of a nerdy Dominican’s quest to find a woman who will love him as much as he loves science fiction . Transporting us from the United States to the Dominican Republic and back, Diaz creates a work of fiction that blends modern language with ancient culture. The life of Oscar DeLeon is told to us by his friend Yunior and briefly his sister Lola. The books structure chronicles the DeLeon family’s reoccurring struggles through intimate stories of their past relationships. While the life of Oscar Wao might be brief, the novel is spewing with historical information while still creating a fictional world in which all the characters live, love, and learn. The characters use specific language to bring us into their world.
The contrast between Yunior’s extensive sophisticated vocabulary and his frequent use of curse words reflect an inner polarity. Yunior’s use of curse words and slang also speak to a younger audience while reflecting his personality. Yunior is the novels main narrator, so his voice is dominant one in the novel. Yunior sees himself as some what of a “bad boy” and uses curse words and slang to enhance that identity. “Here I was going the fuck out of my way to help this fucking idiot out,” says Yunior while describing the frustration he feels towards helping Oscar loose weight (92). Helping Oscar loose weight to get girls doesn’t fit with his “bad boy” look, but perfectly reflects the educated compassionate side to him. Yunior displays moments of articulation reflecting his vast vocabulary “...adolecent nerliness vaporizing any iota of a chance...” (23). By the end of the novel we come to find out it is Yunior who eventually ends up compiling his old friend Oscars lengthy works of literature. A feat unable to be accomplished by the inarticulate “bad boy” he emulates at times. Yunior struggles between his articulate...
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