No Longer Human, Volume 1

By Usamaru Furuya; Osamu Dazai (Based on a Book by)
(Vertical, Paperback, 9781935654193, 194pp.)

Publication Date: October 25, 2011

List Price: $10.95*
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Description
In honor of the 100th birthday of Osamu Dazai, Usamaru Furuya retells Dazai's most important work "No Longer Human" in modern day Tokyo where modern vices can bring ruin to the self-loathing.
Furuya's adaptation of No Longer Human takes place nearly seventy years after Dazai's original. Set in modern day Tokyo, Dazai's tale details the life of a young man originally from a well-off family from Japan's far north. Yozo Oba is a troubled soul incapable of revealing his true self to others. A weak constitution and the lingering trauma from some abuse administered by a relative forces him to uphold a facade of hollow jocularity since high school. The series is composed of three parts, referred to in the novel as "memorandums," which chronicle the life of Oba from his teens to late twenties. The comic is narrated by the artist, Furuya himself, making appearances at the start of each volume. In many ways, it could be said that Furuya has traveled a path that may be similar to Dazai's. Maybe that is what led these two together after 100 years.
In this first of three parts, alternative comic artist Usamaru Furuya appears to be overcome with deadlines. While he has been published by some of the biggest names in the comics industry, his star still shines brightest as a cult favorite, an underground artist whose emo comics are the voice of a new generation. To escape the duldrums of work, he loses himself in the internet and comes across the journal of a man whose life sounds very familiar--Oba Yozo. In Oba's First Memorandum the teen is overcome by an intense feeling of alienation. This pressure is so strong he cannot cope with others making it impossible to socialize with those who surround him, even his own family. To counter this Oba plays the role of the fool in order to establish interpersonal
relationships.



About the Author


Osamu Dazai (1909-1948) is one of the most highly respected author's of modern Japan and is widely regarded as one of the most important figures in post-war Japanese literature. He was widely known by contemporaries for his eclectic lifestyle, inventive use of language, and his multiple suicide attempts, which led to his final, successful attempt in 1948. His two major novels, No Longer Human and The Setting Sun, continue to be widely read and leave a vibrant legacy for one of Japan's greatest writers.
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