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Could you explain the difference between マネ and 行動 as in the following sentences:

安心したまえ この男のリスクリターンの計算と‌自己保身に関してだけはなかなかのものだ‌
刑事罰に問われるようなマネだけは決してしない‌

Don't worry about that.‌ This guy's ability to evaluate risk vs. return and his sense of self-preservation are quite something.‌ He wouldn't do anything that would get him charged with a crime.‌

自分の信念を持って行動しているに過ぎないわ。

I'm just acting on my own beliefs. 

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Both マネ (真似) and 行動 can be translated to "act" or "behavior", but マネ is an accusatory and a little dirty expression, and it is always modified by an adjectival phrase such as ふざけた, 馬鹿な, こんな or ~ような. 行動 is relatively a stiff word suitable in academic contexts, and it is rarely used in slangy speech.

  • 刑事罰に問われるような行動: OK
  • 刑事罰に問われるようなマネ: OK (sounds more accusatory)
  • 自分の信念を持って行動している: OK
  • 自分の信念を持ってマネしている: Incorrect (マネ is not modified by an adjectival expression, and this "act" is used in a positive way)
  • ナメた行動するんじゃねェ: Unnatural (mixture of slangy and formal words)
  • ナメたマネするんじゃねェ: OK (see this question)
  • ヘビの行動を研究している学者: OK
  • ヘビのマネを研究している学者: Incorrect

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