Junot Díaz is the author of the short-story collection Drown (1996) and the novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao (2007). Díaz was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic in 1968. Junot, his siblings, and his mother lived in the Dominican Republic, while Díaz’s father went to the U.S. to work. His father sent for his family when Díaz was seven years old. They lived in a poor part of New Jersey populated primarily by Dominicans. Junot Díaz discusses this part of this life in his short essay “New York: Science Fiction.”

Díaz worked various jobs before becoming a writer, including working at a steel mill and delivering pool tables–episodes that were to appear in his first published collection titled Drown.

His second book, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, is the story of a “ghetto nerd” and the curse that plagues his family. This novel won the Pulitzer Prize in 2008.

Díaz is known for his spare narrative style and his seamless integration of Spanish in his English text. Both Drown and The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao explore the violent history of the Dominican Republic, especially the almost daily violence that occurs in the lives of the immigrant, working-class characters.

A new book titled This is How You Lose Her is due to be published later in 2012. Junot Díaz currently teaches creative writing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.







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