Difference between 解放 and 開放

Hi there,

I was wondering what was the difference between 解放 and 開放. It’s my understanding that both means ‘to open, to release, to liberate’, but by looking at some sentences I can’t quite get the nuance between the two. Is there any ?

Maybe this will help?


I suspect someone with more knowledge will give you a better answer later if that doesn’t help.

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I feel in these cases monolingual dictionaries are the most useful. This is from the one used by NHK News Easy:


  1. 開け放しにすること。
  2. 自由に出入りさせること。



  1. おさえつけていたものから解き放して、じゆうにすること。


「開放」 does have a meaning of “open”, and can be used to make something more “open” as in providing access to things (I guess similar to making things more open in English). If 「開放」 is used as “to liberate”, it is in the sense of “making something available / accessible”.

「解放」, on the other hand, cannot be used to open things in a literal way (you cannot 解放 a closed window to make it open), and is instead to liberate as in escaping the oppression of something (which can be a feeling, or a concept as well).

Antonyms can be useful too. The antonym of 「開放」 is “closing, closure, shutdown, lockout, unsociable​”. That of 「解放」 is “restraint, restriction, fetters, yoke, shackles”.

There’s also a little box in my dictionary about how to use them separately:



Oh I see it now. I didn’t try (or don’t have quite the level yet) to look in a monolingual dictionary, but clearly it’s really usefull. I’ll take a look next time.

Thanks a lot !

The first couple of times I tried a monolingual dictionary I found it frustrating because it was so hard to understand the explanation of the word I was trying to understand… so instead of 1 problem now I had 6.

The dictionary I’m using now is one for elementary school students which is a lot easier to read.

@jjatria How can you directly access the dictionary used by NHK News Easy?

I bought a paper copy while in Japan recently.

I looked for a digital version, but couldn’t find it. But I bet there are electronic versions out there, if not of that dictionary in particular of others like it.

Oh well, thanks for the information.

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