I recently read on jukuu.com “ 它使老的观念向新的观念转变。” This sentence makes sense, but I'm trying to figure out whether it would be much different if I used a term like "概念“ instead of 观念. Is there a clear distinction between the two?


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    Concept in English can mean 1) view/idea of people; 2) abstract principle. But in Chinese, 1) is 观念, 2) is 概念.
    – Stan
    Sep 22, 2014 at 16:59
  • @Stan You have a pretty good answer here. Why not just post it as answer?
    – LulalaBoss
    Sep 22, 2014 at 17:33

2 Answers 2


@Stan's comment is precise enough. To add my own interpret by deconstructing the words,

primarily means idea with a slight connotation of motivation/intention.

means brief; summary; abstract, hence 概念 is the abstract of the idea => concept.

is literally view, so 观念 is the idea as you see it => opinion; view.


If you use the term "观念",it means some thoughts deep in one's mind which instruct one's behavior.No matter the thought is right or wrong. For example,In Chinese mind,saving money is important,but American may not think so.These are two kinds of thoughts(In this situation,we use Chinese the word"观念") 美国人和中国人在储蓄上的观念不同. If you use the term “概念”,it usually means “concept” For example,if you have learnd physics,you would have the concept of gravity.You could translate the word “concept” into “概念” in Chinese. I'am Chinese,if I have made any mistakes in English or written something makes you confused,please correct me.I will be appreciate and happy to discuss with you. :-)

  • It's my first time to post here.I didn't pay attention to the fomat of my answer,sorry for that.
    – haolan
    Sep 23, 2014 at 14:26
  • I needed examples badly and I like yours. For a while yesterday, I thought I didn't really know what a concept was. Sep 23, 2014 at 16:37
  • @GeorgeChen Sorry for my poor English,I don't really understand what you mean by saying"For a while yesterday, I thought I didn't really know what a concept was.You mean originally you understand the term"概念",but the original poster's question makes you confused.And my answer makes you clearer about the term"概念". Do I get what you what to express? Sorry for my poor English.
    – haolan
    Sep 24, 2014 at 16:44
  • I think the best way to explain "概念" is by giving examples (ostensive definition). I'm just beginning to realize that I have used some words whose meanings I did not really know. Your English is pretty good. Sep 24, 2014 at 17:26

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