Already a member? Little Dog links the damage that Trevor sustains, in large part through fear of accepting his queer identity, to his pattern of seeking refuge in drugs. Indeed, the physical acts and the inner realizations occur almost at the same time. "Our mother tongue, then, is no mother at all—but an orphan." Log in here. The grandson of a Vietnamese woman and an American man, Little Dog spends his early years in Vietnam before moving with his family to Connecticut. Our, LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in. Free UK p&p over £10, online orders only. Vuong’s main character, Little Dog, grows up in Connecticut in the 2000s, during the early days of America’s opioid epidemic, and drugs are commonplace during his teenage years. On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous Themes The Traumas of War In his letter, Little Dog not only includes graphic images of war, but also outlines how the war in Vietnam affected his family, particularly his mother and grandmother, who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. You'll get access to all of the On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. As Little Dog grows up in Connecticut during the 1990s and 2000s, he is constantly bombarded with society’s stereotypical assumptions of gender, particularly masculinity. Detailed explanations, analysis, and citation info for every important quote on LitCharts. An epistolary novel, it is written in the form of a letter from a Vietnamese American son to his illiterate mother. Teachers and parents! On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous Themes & Motifs. Learning to accept that men’s identity includes many different kinds of masculinity is an important process for Little Dog—one that requires him to detach his own ideas of masculinity from the heteronormativity of American society, which he ultimately maligns as hegemonic and dangerously oppressive. Little Dog’s nuanced exploration of his personal journey leads the reader to the theme of gender and sexuality as complex and multidimensional. Little Dog notes that Lan’s schizophrenia worsened since the Vietnam War, and she seemed to “flicker before [him], dipping in and out of sense” (16). Emily Nagin reviews Ocean Vuong's debut novel, On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous. LitCharts Teacher Editions. On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is more about processing and articulating difficult memories than about direct communication. From the moment Little Dog and his family arrive, color proves to be of paramount importance in American society. Memory as a … Vuong’s protagonist, Little Dog, is a Vietnamese American who immigrates to the United States from Vietnam in 1990. Personal appearance becomes objectified until a person can see their own reflection as a valuable thing, like any other aesthetically pleasing object. The novel’s narrator, Little Dog, presents a coming-of-age story that includes his initial sexual experiences and his acceptance that he is queer. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearths a family's history that began before he was born — a history whose epicenter is root On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous study guide contains a biography of Ocean Vuong, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. Little Dog’s mother, Rose, chain-smokes cigarettes, and his grandfather, Paul, grows his own marijuana. Ocean Vuong’s On Earth we’re Briefly Gorgeous is an intimate look at the many forms of addiction. The narrator’s harsh criticism of narrow cultural and social norms is not confined to their effects on his own life. Little Dog’s cross-cultural experiences allow him to realize the ways that a person’s perceptions of their racial identity intersect with their appreciation of their own beauty. Print Word PDF. On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous Is a Daring Tale of Queer Love and Pain Vuong was born in Ho Chi Minh City and immigrated to the U.S. with his family as a child. Sometimes, it’s the only pure honesty you’ll get all day." “Do I look like a real American?” Little Dog’s mother, Rose, asks while trying on secondhand…, Ocean Vuong’s On Earth we’re Briefly Gorgeous examines the power of language and storytelling. To order a copy, go to or call 0330 333 6846. Discussion of themes and motifs in Ocean Vuong's On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous. "My students can't get enough of your charts and their results have gone through the roof." He specifically mentions the Tet Offensive, a North Vietnamese attack on South Vietnam in 1968. The project of On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is analogous and deeply felt. Struggling with distance learning? Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Mental Illness. In On Earth we’re Briefly Gorgeous, Vuong explores the lasting effects of the Vietnam War on his family. The main themes of On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous are the multiple dimensions of gender and sexuality; race, perception, and beauty; and the simultaneous necessity and inadequacy of language. They're like having in-class notes for every discussion!”, “This is absolutely THE best teacher resource I have ever purchased. Looking becomes a way... Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous study guide. Our summaries and analyses are written by experts, and your questions are answered by real teachers. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is published by Vintage (RRP £12.99). A modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, SuperSummary offers high-quality study guides that feature detailed chapter summaries and analysis of major themes, characters, quotes, and essay topics. 6 pages at 400 words per page) View a FREE sample. Little Dog recounts his mother’s experiences during the war, as well as those of his grandmother, Lan, and the result is a stark picture of violence, suffering, and starvation. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, by Ocean Vuong "Art needs to be honest. At the age of five, Rose watched as her school collapsed…, Ocean Vuong’s On Earth we’re Briefly Gorgeous is an intimate look at the many forms of addiction. Little Dog notes that Lan’s schizophrenia worsened since the Vietnam War, and she seemed to “flicker before [him], dipping in and out of sense” (16). Tom Hines—Penguin Press On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong is the moving story of a young man known as Little Dog, written as a letter addressed to his illiterate Vietnamese mother.It reveals a family history that begins in Vietnam and moves to the United States when he is just a child, where he comes of age living with a single mother and his grandmother in Connecticut.