A Look Into Junot Diaz’s Dominican Background

Categories: Novel

In ‘How to Date a brown girl’, Junot Diaz writes about his experiences growing as a young Dominican boy in New Jersey. He writes about a teenage boy named Yunior. In the narrative he writes about Yunior’s experiences with different types of girl’s. He writes about taking different girls to different restaurants on dates. In Diaz’s writing he implies that Yunior is putting on a different mask on his different dates. He goes to a specific walk around his town and will go to a specific restaurant for each type of girl.

He acts as if he is a different person on each different date. Susan Balee writes about Junot Diaz growing up in New Jersey. She talks about the different characters Diaz writes about. Whether it is about Yunior growing up in New Jersey, or if Balee is talking about “Oscar, as the nerdiest in a trio of losers, takes on the role of Dungeon Master in their Dungeons & Dragons campaigns.

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Both narratives “Caves, masks and code switching” as well as “How to date a brown girl” depict the growing up of Junot Diaz. One is written from a first-hand account by Junot Diaz depicted as a teenage boy name Yunior. The other narrative is by Susan Balee in a second hand look at Diaz. Balee writes about how Junot Diaz and how he “Clearly, Junot Diaz caught a lot of grief for being the smart kid in a poor, immigrant community. No doubt he was ridiculed, beleaguered, beat up by kids from his own community.

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He learned to code switch. Not just from language to language, but from identity to identity.” Junot Diaz needs to do this so he can fit in with the other kids in his neighborhood. He acts differently in front of each girl because of this as well. He wants to connect with the girl’s on as much of a personal level as he can.

Junot Diaz was beat up as a child and was made fun of because he was smart, he would need to change who he was and what his interests were so that other kids would play with him and hang out with him. Diaz puts code switching in “How to Date a brown girl” because he is making an extension of himself into Yunior. Junot uses masks in his writings whether it is to hide from someone or it is a literal mask like a lucha libre wrestling masks that has significant meaning that when you lose you have to take off the mask and show your real self. Diaz uses different kinds of masks in his writings because that is what he would do as a child, put on a mask.

There are similarities with the two writings. Junot Diaz code switches in “How to date a brown girl, black girl, white girl, or halfie” he changes the way he acts in front of different girls. His behavior changes when he is with them with ease. He knows how to act in front of each girl’s parents and knows how to act if a situation arises while on a date with them. Junot Diaz is an intelligent writer and his experiences growing up helped him become the writer he is today. His experiences are put in all of his books and other pieces of writing. Whether it is Masks or code switching Junot Diaz has used his experiences growing up in his writings. It must be easy for him to pick out certain experiences he had when he was younger and then write about that and create a book from it.

Updated: Feb 21, 2024
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A Look Into Junot Diaz’s Dominican Background. (2024, Feb 21). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/a-look-into-junot-diaz-s-dominican-background-essay

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