“In some ways I think that this book waited for me to become a better person before it wrote itself”
– Junot Diaz on The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
It isn’t everyday you get the opportunity to meet a Pulitzer prize winner, it also isn’t everyday that he comes to do a workshop at your school. This novel was bounced around in Junot Diaz’s head for more then a decade and last night the jurors confirmed what anyone who has read the novel already knew – that the time spent polishing and perfecting was all for the betterment of the readers’ experience. A couple of months ago we reached an agreement with Junot Diaz to come as our artist in residence. Last night he was awarded the Pulitzer for Fiction. What an opportunity for the students! Something tells me the students who get to work closely with Junot will have the opportunity to learn about patience, revision and not settling for anything but their absolute best. Pending approval from Mr. Diaz we will look to broadcast some of his time on Ustream and on CMS Radio so stay tuned – i will put more details up here. (New York Times article, Slate interview).
On a personal note not only am i happy to see this award going to a Dominican but also my book club read this book in December and the discussion was one of the best that we have had. When i asked one of the more well read members of the group to comment (for this blog) on the committee’s selection of Oscar, he responded with this:
The choice of Oscar Wao for the Pulitzer for fiction evinces a sensitivity for the peculiar by the Pulitzer nominating committee at Columbia (they chose Middlesex, too!). Oscar’s skewed narrative structure, delightfully esoteric pop-culture references, and hipper-than-thou wordplay cast it as a somewhat unlikely recipient for what will now assuredly be even wider appeal than it has achieved up to this point. The book’s increasing success is a great endorsement of the level of literary appreciation in the states right now.
If you have yet to read it, go out and get it.
As for this week we have kicked off Heart Care Dominicana week. Last year we raised just less then 300,000 pesos this year we have a school-wide goal of 320,000 enough to provide 4 lifesaving surgeries to children in need. Our high school students have a wonderful service based relationship volunteering at the hospital but this annual even literally saves lives and is the stuff that makes a school community proud of its students. This student created video was shown at the launch assembly yesterday:
[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/8SDE-IYBDtY" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]
follow our progress through this page on our HighSchool Wiki
Wow lots going on here…and all the while construction of our new media center continues:
April 7, 2008
img from: http://www.republicaupdate.com/images/2007/09/03/junot_wao_cover.jpg