Motojiro Kajii 梶井基次郎
Motojiro Kajii (1901–1932) suffered from pleurisy when young, despite which he began to indulge in what he termed a "decadent life" from around age 20. While enrolled in the department of English literature at the University of Tokyo he launched a literary coterie magazine, Aozora(Blue Skies, 1925–27), with other Kyoto Third Higher School graduates. Although overshadowed by Ryunosuke Akutagawa, Jun'ichiro Tanizaki, and Naoya Shiga, he shared their influences—Tolstoy, Baudelaire, Poe—and a basic orientation toward aestheticism. His pleurisy recurred in 1926 and he died at the age of 31 in 1932. Recognition of his talent came only posthumously. His works are characterized by their leavening of a sophisticated, poetic sense of the world with notes of anxiety, despair and decadence, all integrated into a logical, analytical prose style. A collection of his first 18 short stories was published in 1931 under the title Remon (Lemon, tr. 2009). His 1932 novella Nonki na kanja (The Carefree Patient) appeared in the magazine Chuokoron shortly before his death. A collection of Kajii's correspondence titled Wakaki shijin no tegami (Letters of a Young Poet) was published in 1955.