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About the Author
OSAMU DAZAI was born in 1909 into a powerful landowning family of northern Japan. A brilliant student, he entered the French department of Tokyo University in 1930, but later boasted that in the five years before he left without a degree, he had never attended a lecture. Dazai was famous for confronting head-on the social and moral crises of postwar Japan before he committed suicide by throwing himself into Tokyo's Tamagawa Aqueduct. His body was found on what would have been his 39th birthday.
Ralph McCarthy has lived in Japan for almost two decades. He is the translator of many short stories by Osamu Dazai and of Ryu Murakami's novel 69.
What I despise about Dazai is that he exposes precisely those things in myself that I most want to hide.--Yukio Mishima
A cult figure for Japan's disaffected youth.-- "The Village Voice"