The Sauron of Santo Domingo

1062 WordsJun 18, 20185 Pages
The many references by Junot Diaz to J.R.R. Tolkien's universe in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao prove to be more than just an allusion to the fantastical works. The recurring comparisons of the Trujillato to the power of Sauron are more than just metaphors. They are descriptions. Diaz uses his references to describe people and situations, in real life, that have no other way of being described. The first direct quote of Oscar de Leon is, “What more sci-fi than Santo Domingo? What more fantasy than the Antilles?” (6). Diaz gives direct meaning to this statement through Yunior’s knowledge and love of the speculative genre, which he picked up from Oscar, and parallels the world we live in with the fantastical world of Middle-Earth,…show more content…
Although Shelob lives in Sauron’s domain, he does not have any direct control over her. Also, just as Shelob never hesitates to prey on both man and orc, so too La Fea “cheated everyone she did business with, including her brother” (139). Diaz uses the allusion to explain even what the sister of Trujillo thinks, knowing that Shelob does not like to kill her prey right away, instead stinging them and leaving them paralyzed before she actually kills them. This method is used against Beli as well; when La Fea orders her orcs to capture Beli, she is beaten to the brink of death, but not killed. The perfection and detail of Diaz’s allusion goes much deeper than a simple metaphor, and actually defines who this character is. When Tolkien originally wrote The Lord of the Rings, he did so as reference to World War II, which was ongoing at the time. For him, Sauron was a representation of Hitler; the gaze of His Eye, the spread of industrialization and destruction from the war. For Diaz, Sauron is Trujillo, the gaze of His Eye, the domination he exerted, as well as the anonymity of his secret police. It was one thing for Diaz to make the comparison of Trujillo to Sauron, but he now affirms his argument by adding figurative subtext to it. Diaz writes that “Trujillo’s beloved Morgul Lords [were the

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