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Etiquette & Manners

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Johanna Read

on 11 June 2015

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Transcript of Etiquette & Manners

Charlotte Brontë
boarding school
guardian of younger sisters
little time in society
"tiny, delicate, serious ....grave and stern... Everyone waited for the brilliant conversation which never began at all."
Author Background
The Proposals
Jane Eyre
"Is she sarcastic, and sarcastic to me!" it seemed to say."
Charlotte Bronte frowns on St. John's extreme devotion to self-sacrifice/religion
St. John heavily pressures Jane to accompany him, but remains composed and polite (superficial side of manners)
St. John is stunned by Jane's sarcastic refusal of his marriage proposal
St. John expects Jane, as a female, to comply and forget about herself for others (gender) (hypocrisy)

The Importance of Being Earnest
"You will marry me, won’t you?"
"You silly boy! Of course. Why, we have been engaged for the last three months"
Topic is taken lightly, like a trivial game of manners (humor)
Tone: playful, flirtatious
-Diana and Mary--relaxed, natural relationship; emphasis on manners and etiquette is not as strict
-St. John--stiff, formal; expects Jane to comply with his demands out of good manners and respect; to control her own desires, be selfless
Victorian Etiquette
-displayed in social situations
-to show respect between host and guest
-breaches of etiquette were very serious but easy to commit
-extremely high value placed on manners and behavior in social situations
by Christina Read, Johanna Read, Irene Rauch, and Lydia Jensen
Etiquette and Manners
Oscar Wilde
In Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë reveals her informative purpose to criticize the superficiality and hypocrisy of etiquette and manners in Victorian society.

The events in The Importance of Being Earnest reveal Oscar Wilde's informative purpose to use humor in order to ridicule the value placed on etiquette and manners in Victorian Society.
The Dinner Party from Jane Eyre
Good Morning Scene
Tea with Gwendolen and Cecily
Irish nationalist mother
aesthetic movement: lavish
famous, celebrity
"The dinner table was Wilde's event and made him the greatest talker of his time"
Before we begin...
If you are going to your dear friend’s wedding, should you bring a gift? (Yes or No)
Jane And Her Cousins
Fight for control and dominance
Polite words and actions veil insults
Mocks social norms
Gender: Women must be polite
Class: Use good manners in front of servants - important to maintain reputation
: I am so very sorry, dear Cecily, if it is any disappointment to you, but I'm afraid I have the prior claim.

: It would distress me more than I can tell you, dear Gwendolen, if it caused you any mental or physical anguish, but I feel bound to point out that since Ernest proposed to you he clearly has changed his mind.
"I thought I might have retorted the question on him who put it: but I would not take that freedom. I answered- 'I did not wish to disturb you, as you seemed engaged, sir.'" (205)
Major obstacle in Jane and Rochester's relationship: communication and etiquette
Forward and concise conversation was considered rude, prying, and vulgar
Never clear with each other and their feelings
always remained within the acceptable "polite" conversation and conduct (Example: "sir" "Mr. Rochester")
always very serious and reserved-unusual for lovers
Miss Ingram insults Jane in a vague, indirect manner to avoid being rude =superficial
Miss Ingram and her mother speak poorly of governesses fully aware that Jane is listening= superficial
The Ingrams had governesses in the past= hypocritical

Impolite to refuse an enagagement: elaborate story
Escape, but keep up appearances
Comedy with a purpose
Today: similar etiquette
No! Only family relations are expected to give gifts. You should merely give your warm sentiments
When at a wedding, who should you compliment? Bride or Groom?
Groom, it is impolite to compliment the bride-merely wish them a happy future. The Groom is the one to be congratulated. He is considered the lucky one.
Polite argument
Lady Bracknell has control over men
Lady Bracknell vs. Jack
To greet a lady on the street, should you:

a.) touch the brim of your hat
b.) lift your whole hat off your head
c.) lift your hat partially off your head
d.) “FIST BUMP!”

What is the maximum number of dances a lady can dance with the same man?
a.) 1
b.) 2
c.) 3
d.) The limit does not exist

: B! You should lift your whole hat. It is rude to lift it only partially off your head.
If you have bright red hair and a florid complexion should you marry someone with red hair as well? Yes or No?
No! You should marry someone with jet black hair.
In Victorian Society, young ladies often used fans to communicate silently with young men. What did it mean if a lady slowly fanned herself?

a.) Follow me
b.) I wish to speak with you
c.) Don’t forget me
d.) Don’t waste your time; I don’t care about

Jane Eyre
, Charlotte Bronte criticizes the superficiality and hypocrisy of etiquette and manners in Victorian society.

The Importance of Being Earnest
, Oscar Wilde uses humor and trivial matters to poke fun at the value placed on etiquette and manners during that time.
"I grant an ugly
is a blot on the fair face of creation, but as to the
..." (204)
"The fact is I have just had a telegram to say that my poor friend Bunbury is very ill again. They seem to think I should be with him."
Answer: D - Don't waste your time. It can also mean "I'm married"
What did it mean if a lady used her fan to hide from the sunlight?

a.) Good-bye.
b.) You have changed.
c.) I am sorry.
d.) You are ugly.
Answer: D - You are ugly
Was Gwendolyn correct when she stated:
“Cake is rarely seen at the best houses nowadays.” ?

Answer: No, sugar was perfectly
acceptable and widely used.
No, the most proper thing to do would be to have both available. Bread and butter was more traditional, but delicate cakes were common as well.
Was Gwendolyn correct when she stated that “Sugar is not fashionable anymore.” ?
Full transcript