I'm writing about Hobbes and Locke who basically have two different understandings of the word 'right'. When Hobbes says 'right' or 'rights' he is referring to one's liberty to do something, whereas Locke uses 'right' to mean someone's claim to something. This may seem a subtle difference, but I'm looking for terms that describe the authors' different use of the same word without the sentence looking clumsy. Thanks.

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    Hi Oscar, this would be better placed on English SE, as it isn't about writing. That said, what you are describing are homonyms - words that look the same and sound the same, but have different meanings. I'd also point out, they don't have two different understandings of the word, they are both using the word correctly - it's the context (and hence meaning) that is different. – Thomo Feb 24 '19 at 11:34
  • How about "weaponization"? – Hot Licks Feb 25 '19 at 0:28
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    Can you give us an example sentence showing how you want to use the term? That will give is a better idea of what you're looking for in terms of part of speech, nuance, etc. – 1006a Feb 25 '19 at 5:01

You could say that they are using the word in a different interpretation.


an explanation or opinion of what something means

Source: Cambridge Dictionary

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