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What is the difference between neo and new?

edited July 2013 in Miscellaneous
We often across the two terms prefixed to various concepts. But what is the exact difference between New and neo?

like its usage in neo imperialism or new Keynesian vs neo Keynesian?


  • Can't give you exact definitions, but here's a shot -

    Neo- is mostly used to note a rejuvenation of an older idea with or without modifications or the continuation of an older idea after a gap. The gap seems to be important, when the idea fell out of use or favour. The Neo-s are a new breed carying forward that older idea. For example - neopagan, neokynsean, neoconservative, neoliberal, Neo-Gothic architecture or "Gothic revival architecture"

    "New" can sometimes stand in for neo-, but generally it just means something brand new (or projected to be brand new).

    Prelims : 2/5; Mains : 0/2; Interview : 0; Remainder : 1+1 (Tired but not; Retired) / Medical Science / Kolkata / Nihilist extraordinaire | Thanks a lot...
  • The terms neo and new just represent different foci for research and analysis there is no normative difference between them. The terms new and neo don't add anything except signifying that it is new spin on an old concept. Neo-marxism could just have been called new-marxism without making a difference.

    Since the name neo-keynesian was already taken, the economists went with 'new-keynesian' for their new theory.

    There is no generalised distinction between these two terms.
  • Stand corrected. :)
    Prelims : 2/5; Mains : 0/2; Interview : 0; Remainder : 1+1 (Tired but not; Retired) / Medical Science / Kolkata / Nihilist extraordinaire | Thanks a lot...
  • See as far as I know, new is something novel and something which has not happened before. E.g. China is practising a new kind of capitalism.

    Whereas neo is something that already existed earlier but has been revived again now and is being practised under a different veil. E.g. US is practising neo-imperialism now. See imperialism was practised before as well but it slowly faded away after 2nd world war. Now, US is practising imperialism again. Its meaning is same, its goals are same just that US is using different means to achieve the same end.

    Hope I am clear enough in my approach.
    You can visit my Blawg at
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