Site Feedback

Resolved questions
Distinction between"mechanism"and"mechanics"

I would like to get some sentence examples that are fit for only one of them,being incorrect if the other were used.Thank you.
Better native speakers answer please(don't mean to offend anyone but for credibility)

For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Language



    Please enter between 2 and 2000 characters.



    Sort by:


    Best Answer - Chosen by the Asker
    You ask tricky questions!

    I think firstly, mechanism denotes also a single process that produces a result. Mechanics usually refers to the components and relationship of those components within a system as well as the system in its entirety, so we talk about quantum mechanics for example.

    So, e.g. 'In cell mechanics, we focus on how the cell functions as a mechanical unit, with all the components acting as an integrated whole to accomplish a mechanical function.' (Thank you Columbia University)

    On side note, a mechanic is also someone who fixes your car, so mechanics would be plural.

    As for mechanism, as I said it's a single process with a single result. So when people talk about an entire system they talk about the 'mechanisms' (plural) that are involved. As a word, it is applied across many different fields, engineering, philosophy, biology, sociology etc.

    So, for an example, from the field of psychology:

    'Sigmund Freud believed that the Unconscious mind used defence mechanisms to protect the Self from feelings of anxiety and unacceptable impulses.'

    I hope that helps

    Submit your answer

    Please enter between 2 and 2000 characters.

    If you copy this answer from another italki answer page, please state the URL of where you got your answer from.