The Book of Anime: Senpai


The Book of Anime: Senpai


Book of Anime is a  series where we define and explain for you, the terms used in anime and give

valuable insights into the anime industry. Today we are discussing the term Senpai. Senpai is a 

(Japanese word) when translated into English means Upperclassman. Though I am sure you have heard

it a lot in anime so far, you may not know exactly why or how it’s used. So to give a simple example,

(pause) anyone older than you in school is a Senpai. This term of course automatically commands

respect and is an important distinction for the relationship dynamic. Senpai can be used by itself or at

the end of a name such as Saito-Senpai and is used in a place of work as well.



Let’s now look at from a Senpai perspective.  When a person is called Senpai, he or she wears it as a

badge of honor. We have all seen characters in anime take their role as Senpai very seriously. For Me

personally, being called a Senpai is humbling, but for Some though in anime or In real life insist upon it

being used when speaking to them. It’s important to Remember though The term can be a bit diluted in

Anime fan culture because pretty much anyone you have admiration for is considered Senpai. Hopefully

now that you have an explanation the term Senpai you have a better understanding of what it means

and how to use it.  So tell us, Do you have a Senpai in real life? If so let us know who your Senpai is in

real life. 



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