On manners

21 10 2011

According to the AQs you recently submitted (RI Prelim 2009) here’s what an alarming number of you mistakenly believe manners  refers to:

Good manners

  • donating to charity
  • helping those in need
Bad manners
  • embezzling money
  • stealing your friend’s things
  • cheating
  • engaging in pre-marital sex
  • sexual harrassment
These points have appeared multiple times now, in various AQs. Just to clarify, none of the above are about manners. 
There’s a piece in the Oct 31 2011 issue of TIME that does discuss manners, available online here.

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2 responses

30 10 2011
Brenda

Hi Ms de Souza,
Is pretending not to see people that need the seats more than them considered bad mannerism?
How about posting pictures onto STOMP without the person’s consent?

30 10 2011
Adrienne de Souza

I’d say the first is more of being inconsiderate, but I could accept it.

I wouldn’t accept the second – I’d say that’s invasion of privacy, not manners.

Check out these definitions –

Manners: Ways of behaving with reference to polite standards

Polite: 1. showing good manners toward others, as in behavior, speech, etc.; courteous; civil: a polite reply. 2. refined or cultured: polite society. 3. of a refined or elegant kind: polite learning.

So good manners is basically about being polite; bad manners is about being rude.

E.g. Answering a text while having a face-to-face conversation with someone might be considered rude (bad manners); phrasing emails politely even when writing a letter providing negative feedback would be polite (good manners). Or addressing your elders respectfully using the appropriate titles (uncle, aunty, miss, mr) is polite; calling out to them with an “oi!” would be rude.

Sent from my iPhone

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