Manga in Japan is categorized by genres that are intended for certain demographics. Instead of organizing titles by the types of story settings, such as fantasy or science fiction, they receive labels such as shonen or shojo.
Ironically, the reader bade for these genres don’t always fall within their demographic. Shonen manga, for example, is the most popular genre; intended for young males, it’s widely read by both males and females of all ages, and account for the majority of manga sold in Japan.
Genres of Category
Shonen Manga: The most popular genre of manga in Japan, this accounts for more than half of all manga made. Intended for young males, it’s enjoyed by both males and females of all ages. Stories typically focus on adventures, fantasies, and all the other stuff young males tend to drift towards.
Shojo Manga: This genre is intended for young females, and often focuses on relationships and romance. Characters are overly beautified and given a much more feminine appeal. Because most of the stories in shojo manga tend to fall into a slice-of-life setting, the relatable scenarios and vocabulary make this genre very approachable for new Japanese language learners.
Seinen Manga: Written with more adult themes and adult-oriented content, seinen manga is intended for young adult males. The stories found in seinen manga often offer more substance and are less shallow than the stories you may encounter in shonen and shojo manga, however these stories are not as easily approachable to new Japanese language learners, as they often lack furigana and include complex kanji and vocabulary.
Josei Manga: Similar to seinen manga, josei manga is written with young adult females in mind. Stories are often similar to shojo manga, in the sense that they still tend to revolve around relationships and romance, but offer more substance and include more adult themes and content. Like seinen manga, josei manga can be more difficult to approach depending on your Japanese language ability.
Regarding Sexual Content
Manga in Japan are not flagged for sexual content as they are in western countries. Japan is much more open about nudity, and sexual content does not always carry the same stigma that it does in the west. Since such content can occur on a case-by-case basis in any genre, please use your due diligence prior to purchase.
Please note that Japanese Please does not sell nor knowingly carry any obscene or pornographic materials. Such materials cannot be exported out of Japan, and we will remove any such materials from our website that we find fall into that category.
Your Opinion Matters
There are a number of other manga genres outside these main four, and we are happy to include more at your request. Always feel free to request any manga titles you cannot find and we will upload them to our website as soon as possible. All suggestions and opinions are welcome.