No Longer Human by Osamu Dazai

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The poignant and fascinating story of a young man who is caught between the breakup of the traditions of a northern Japanese aristocratic family and the impact of Western ideas.

Portraying himself as a failure, the protagonist of Osamu Dazai's No Longer Human narrates a seemingly normal life even while he feels himself incapable of understanding human beings. Oba Yozo's attempts to reconcile himself to the world around him begin in early childhood, continue through high school, where he becomes a "clown" to mask his alienation, and eventually lead to a failed suicide attempt as an adult. Without sentimentality, he records the casual cruelties of life and its fleeting moments of human connection and tenderness.

About Osamu Dazai

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Osamu Dazai (1909-48) is generally known for representing the dark years immediately following WWII. Shortly after finishing two of his greatest works, The Setting Sun and No Longer Human, he succeeded in his third attempt at suicide. Ralph F. McCarthy is a writer, lyricist, and translator from Michigan and California. Among his translations are another collection of stories by Osamu Dazai, Self Portraits, and 69 by Ryu Murakami
Published January 17, 1973 by New Directions. 196 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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