Throughout the novel the Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao Yunior tells the story of oscars family that is allegedly cursed by the Fuku. The dominican family that roots back to when Trujillo was in power has been tragical effected by the Fuku. The main character Oscar is an awkward Dominican that balms his failures on the curse of the Fuku. The curse started back in the Dominican republic when the oppressive dictator Trujillo convicted oscars grandfather Abelard who was a respected doctor for conspiracy. When oscars grandfather was put in jail he was tortured and beaten, this was the origin of the curse for the Wao’s. Like a gene the curse has been passed down the family to oscar. The author Junot Diaz uses the motif of the Fuku to illustrate how bani allows her awful past to dramatically affect her and children.
Everyone that lived in the dominican was in some way negatively effected by Trujillo. Oscar Wao was a living example of the fuku and how not only Trujillo effected the dominican people of his time but even the people two generations later. For example (p.5)“wether I believe in what many have described as the great american doom is not really the point. You live as long as I did in the heart of Fuku country, you hear these kinds of tales all the time everybody in san domingo has a Fuku story knocking around in their family.” Yunior is expressing the fact that even if you are not a believer of the Fuku curse if you are dominican there is a good chance it has affected you or your family.
When oscars mother was left an orphan she was put through unbelievably awful circumstances much like her fathers. This time in Bani’s life effect who she became and how she parented Oscar.(78)“From 1951 on, “hija” and “madre” running their famous bakery near the plaza central and keeping their fading, airless house in tip-top shape. (before 1951, our orphan girl had lived with another foster family, monsterous people if the rumors are to be believed, a dark period of her life neither she nor her madre ever referenced. Their very own pagina en blanco). This quotation refers to how oscars mother was effected by the Fuku. The reason she was an orphan was because Trujillo killed her parents. The events of her childhood were a direct result of Trujillo but Bani had the power to put the past in the past and parent Oscar the right way, because Bani did not do this the Fuku lives on.
Many times in the book a Wao has been injured almost to the point of death. Once was when Oscar attempted suicide. Oscars Suicide attempt was not just because he lost the first girl he has ever loved it was also because of how Oscar had almost no self esteem. Even his own mother would belittle him from a young age. The suicide attempt went wrong and Oscar survived to live another day. (p.191) “Except that this one of the garden dividers that they planted shrubs on and he hit the freshly tilled loam and not the concrete.”
Because he hit the fresh loam he survived with many harsh injures instead of plummeting to his death as planned. This was an incident in Oscar Wao’s life that was a result of his failures like his failure to love or be loved. This failure stems back to how his mother raised him with very tough love because of the her childhood.
The novel clearly illustrated how the Fuku has effected all Dominican people even if they had immigrated off the island. To me this novel is not about dominican people and there history it is about how only one man effected millions of lives not only in one point it time but for generations to come. Junot Diaz shows the reader how we all have the power to stop horrible things like the Fuku from effecting the next generation but you must have the power to leave the past in the past.
Courtney from Study Moose
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