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  1. Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Hong Kong
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Dec 2007
    • Posts: 468

    "mean-ends relationship"

    What does it mean by "mean-ends relationship"?
    Grateful if you could give me a hint.

    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434

    Re: "mean-ends relationship"

    As usual, there is a distinct lack of context to give us a clue.

  2. Senior Member
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Oct 2008
    • Posts: 907

    Re: "mean-ends relationship"

    Dear Deepurple:

    A bit more context would help, but here is what occurs to me:

    'The means' refers to the methods by which one achieves a goal.

    'The ends' refers to the outcome of an effort.

    A common expression is: 'The ends justify the means.' A person who says this is claiming that 'even though I may have had to do difficult/ethically questionable/distasteful things, my actions were justified because the result of my actions was beneficial or worth it in some way.'

    So, a means-ends relationship would be, I suppose, the relationship between one's methods (means) and their result (ends).


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