The role of good and evil in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

The Cabrals, like many other Dominican households declare to be “victim [s] of a top-level fukú” (p. 154). They are continuously pestered by bad luck, so frequently, in reality that it does not appear to be just luck, making them helpless to their situations. The only explanation is a curse: fukú. By blaming bad luck on super natural energy, magic realism becomes an option to where the curse may have come from and how the characters can rid themselves of it. In The Quick and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Juno Díaz, references to Fukú and Zafa, through Galactus and the Mongoose describe power and powerlessness in the Cabral household line.

Right from the beginning of the novel, the concept of power is a considered topic within the Epigraph from Fantastic 4. It reads, “Of what import are short, anonymous lives … to Galactus?” (very first epigraph). Galactus is a god-like figure that uses his power mercilessly. When applying the epigraph to characters in the book, it can securely be presumed that Trujillo is Galactus, and Oscar is the “short, anonymous” life. By comparing Oscar’s relatively ineffective life, to that of Trujillo, the male who is “popular for altering all the landmarks in the Dominican Republic to honor himself,” one can’t assist however question the worth of Oscar’s life, comparatively (p. 2). The epigraph to the second area of the book reads, “Male are not vital. However Trujillo is irreplaceable. For Trujillo is not a man. He is … a cosmic force … Those who try to compare him to his regular contemporaries are errors. He comes from … the category of those born to a special destiny” (p. 204). This, too, forces the reader to not just think about Oscar, however all the members of the Cabral family line. They are not as powerful as Galactus. The claims that compare” [Trujillo’s] nearly supernatural capabilities” to that of a comics character need to likewise acknowledge that this is not possible without the part of Magical Realism (p. 3). The unique becomes instilled with magical realism when wonderful qualities are applied to real characters to explain power dynamics.

Due to the fact that Trujillo may have an unearthly amount of power, humans like those in the Cabral family line can not declare the ability to combat his influences, forcing them to accept his very natural cursing capabilities– the fukú. The distressed Abelard is the very first to understand the circumstance, exclaiming, “I’m the dad of my home! I’m the one who states what goes!” His friend, Marcus, responds, what can you do? … Trujillo’s the president and you’re just the medical professional. If he wants your daughter at the party you can do absolutely nothing but obey.” Abelard objects, “But this isn’t human!” (p. 229). In this interaction Marcus comprehends Trujillo’s wicked power, and attempts to impart his knowledge, however Abelard is enraged and refuses to listen. Abelard understanding the supernatural powers that Trujillo utilizes in his interactions with his civilians, and exclaims, “However this isn’t human.” Abelard combats the class structure. Due to the fact that he does not use his good friend’s advice regarding the scenario, Trujillo curses the household. When his family tree talk about the curse, 2 generations later on, they “always begin in the exact same place: with Abelard and the Bad Thing he said about Trujillo” (p. 211) This reveals that the familial fuku has a traceable start to a singular occasion in which the Galactus-Trujillo inflicts his supernatural power on the Cabral household and forces them to sustain menstruation. The Cabrals were formerly part of “the Fortunate People,” formerly unaffected by the reign of Trujillo (p. 213). As quickly as the household line is affected, however, every bad occasion ends up being a testimony of the fuku imposed upon them since of the disrupted power structure.

The fuku has a ripple affects. Initially, all the members of the instant Cabral family are pestered with death. These abrupt deaths are tragic and various. Then, even Beli, youngest daughter and the just one to live, “was sold to complete strangers in another part of Azura” (p. 253). Since there are many horrors, it becomes so not likely to be pure opportunity; obviously the fukú is to blame. Trujillo’s wicked power overruns the family. She is impacted by the curse, the curse then affects her children, particularly though Oscar through depression. Menstruation has a linear pattern.

Because of the helplessness that has actually been instilled in the culture, when something great does happen, it is almost difficult to comprehend. After the Elvises battered Beli, the entire town arguments the scenario: “Fukú vs. Zafa” they argue. Some saw her 2nd interference with the wicked totalitarian as a curse, however others saw her survival as a blessing. “To [La Inca’s] dying day she thought that Beli had actually fulfilled not a curse but God out in that canfield. I fulfilled something, Beli would say, guardedly” (p. 152). Accepting that advantages do take place spontaneously would force them to accept that bad things take place spontaneously too, discrediting their theory of the fukú. Instead of accepting this, explanations are conjured. Some seek solace in the idea of a counter-curse, while others think in God. This interaction reveals their common belief in something bigger. La Inca might not simply believe that Beli was strong enough to make it out on her own, so she believes that the religious greater power stepped in. Beli is hesitant to accept this manifestation of God, explained by her language. Beli is cautious about describing her interaction with magic due to the fact that confessing that the Mongoose was a magical counter-curse, or a zafa, would likewise, subsequently, confess that there was a fukú. This would declare the helplessness of the human condition and the requirement for a higher-power, wonderful option.

In spite of Beli’s resistance in admitting it to others, for her, the Mongoose was the zafa that assisted her out of the walking stick fields, supplying the hope she needed. When stumbling out the of cane, “she saw the animal’s chabine eyes flashing through the stalks. Yo me llamo sueño de la madrugada. The walking stick didn’t desire her to leave, naturally; it slashed at her palms, jabbed into her flank and clawed her thighs” (p. 150). The walking stick is referred to as slashing and clawing, giving it animal-like characteristics. The Mongoose, on the other hand, calls itself, “the dream of dawn,” in Spanish. Dawn signifies a newness, and flexibility to begin over. Beli interrupts this as hope for a much better tomorrow. She holds on to “the faces of her promised future– her promised kids– and from that acquired strength she needed to continue” (p. 151). The different descriptions inform the reader that the Mongoose is not a normal animal, because it has power. The Mongoose, as “an ally of Guy,” utilizes it to bring want to those in requirement, against Trujillo’s non-human power (p. 151). This is similar to La Inca’s understanding of God. The Mongoose is the symptom of the zafa, bringing power to the “quick, nameless lives,” that Trujillo’s power has been reducing.

When Oscar satisfies the Mongoose in his time of desperation, standing above the train tracks, he does not believe in the Mongoose since the Trujillo’s fukú has actually been too engrained in him. After seeing “the Golden Mongoose,” “instead of keeping in mind of the vision and changing his methods [Oscar] simply shook his inflamed head” (p. 190). When questioned, he declares, “It was menstruation that made me do it” (p. 194). He has no capability for hope any longer. Contrary to Beli’s experience, the Mongoose showed up “before Beli lost hope” (p. 149). The 2nd time Oscar fulfills the Mongoose, nevertheless, he has already satisfied Ybón. The Mongoose brings him the warning, “What will it be, muchacho? … Basically?” (p. 301). The magic is transformed into hope, altering the defenseless attitude of the fukú– caused to among new life. He considers all his true blessings, and he is able to pull himself out of the deathly curse. He gets hope and with it the will to survive. Hope is power.

The Mongoose’s momentary hope allows the character approach a more long-term option to rid themselves of their fukú. In his last days, Oscar composes an unique and the conclusion has to do with “whatever [he] believes [Lola] will require … (It’s the treatment to what ails [them] …)” (p. 333). After the Mongoose’s final notice about “basically,” Oscar gains inspiration to live. He begins to follow his love. He goes back to the Dominican loaded with vitality, no longer afflicted by the fukú. By composing an unique, he is making his hope a permanent zafa for the fukú, ideally ruining Trujillo’s terrible curse. “The only issue [is], the fucking thing never got here!” (p. 334). This is the fukú preventing its own death. As it had actually taken two generations to comprehend the power of hope that the Mongoose communicated, it may take another 2 for the hope to be moved into the power of appropriate action– a working zafa– and for the Oscar’s niece to “put an end to [the fukú] (p. 331). These actions would bring back the power to human beings, which Trujillo’s super natural power kicked out.

The battle in between Trujillo’s curse and the Mongoose’s reprieve are the symptom of the fukú and the zafa. The Cabral family line thinks in them so full-heartedly since it relieves them of self-blame for their own misery. As the majority of Dominican households believe in the fukú because the majority of them had family whom resided in the Trujillo reign. It is a cycle of oppression. Oscar is “Fascinating” due to the fact that he found supplies an interruption in the cycle. Through his nerdy fascination with comics, he used Galactus’s power to Trujillo and the wonderful qualities of the Mongoose, which stabilizes the system of power. It is his remedy for the fukú for the Cabral family line and for all Dominicans with heritage in the Trujillo routine.