Oscar Wao Identity

Words: 1457
Pages: 6

In the coming of age novel, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, written by Junto Diaz, the author uses a collection of narratives from characters of the past and present to address the struggles and adversities of growing up as a Dominican and the hardships of living during Trujillo’s regime. The story focuses on a Dominican male named Oscar, who, due to his nerdy interest and naive love for woman, gets himself in trouble and faces many issues throughout the story. His main issue in the novel is trying to come to terms with his personality and accepting his nontraditional Dominican identity. Through the use of the main character Oscar, Diaz addresses masculinity in the Dominican culture as well as the clash between culture and identity and the idea of being born without the choice of an choosing ones identity.
Understanding the Dominican culture in regards to masculinity plays a huge role into understanding Oscar as a person and the trouble he has fitting into his Dominican cultural identity. Masculinity in the Dominican culture means exerting power and control over everything. Men are the head of the household, the main provider, and are supposed to be excellent flirts. An example of
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As stated in the article “Machismo and the Dominican Republic”, this aggressive mindset of masculinity is very common among Dominicans and that it “is not recognized as a result of a social structure, but as a biological result” (“Machismo and the” n.d). Many believe that men are biologically supposed to be into those “masculine” activities such as sports, flirting, and displaying control and power because it is simply in there nature. Likewise, the fact that the mindset is popular among the culture brings up the issue pointed out in the novel of the clash between cultural identity and