Osamu Dazai’s “No Longer Human” comprises a series of three fictionalized notebooks, with each increasingly darker than the last. The character writing these books, Yozo, is detached from the beginning and is afraid of human interactions, but he learns how to socialize with people by playing the clown and entertaining his way into favor from a young age. Yet his alienation remains, despite how he may appear from the outside.
“People talk of social outcasts,” Dazai writes through Yozo. “The words apparently denote the miserable losers of the world, the vicious ones, but I feel as though I have been a ‘social outcast’ from the moment I was born.”