Junot Diaz – as impactful when he speaks as when he writes

December 14, 2012 § Leave a comment

Junot Diaz, author of the highly acclaimed Drown, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and the recently released This is How You Lose Her, is amazingly eloquent as a speaker. He carries over his intelligence, charm, wit, humor, empathy and insight from the page to the interview set quite seamlessly.

I have watched a handful of really interesting interviews with Diaz discussing his experiences as a writer, an academic, a cultural critic and all the various roles he has taken on in his life. A common thread between all of the clips is his ability to construct a thought with precision and insight that is emblematic of a highly matured thought process. He hardly fails, even in sentences that seem to be off-the-cuff or filler, to convey a cogent and considered thought. After spending a year surrounded by mainstream political rhetoric, which even at its finest can be less than evocative and often repeats familiar patterns, I am perhaps more impressed than an average viewer with Diaz’s oratory. It also doesn’t hurt that I’ve devoured his writing in the last few years and thought highly of him as a cultural icon for hyphenated-Americans.

None the less, I hope to learn from him. Learn to speak as deeply as I think. Maybe I should start by thinking deeply first.


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