Seiichi Makino was born in Tokyo in 1935. During the war, he spent part of his childhood on the island of Shikoku, located between the Inland Sea and the Pacific Ocean. At first, he studied at Waseda University in Tokyo, where he defended his bachelor’s and master’s degrees; then he changed his field of study to linguistics at the University of Tokyo. There he began his doctorate, but later went on a scholarship to the Universities of Indiana and Illinois. He received his PhD in linguistics in 1968.
While working on his dissertation, Seiichi was an assistant and junior lecturer in Japanese and Linguistics at the University of Illinois, becoming an assistant professor in 1971 and a professor in 1984. In 1988-9 he was a guest lecturer, teaching Japanese language at Harvard. In 1991 he joined the Department of East Asian Studies.
His works include: Kodansha’s Basic English-Japanese Dictionary, NAKAMA: Japanese Communication, Culture, Context, Aspects of Linguistics, A Dictionary of Advanced Japanese Grammar.