“If you need to take a train, in what class would you generally travel? We would usually opt for standard class, it’s a short journey after all. But if you fancy a little luxury, try to buy a first-class ticket, and enjoy the difference. Clean curtains, a quiet carriage, smiling staff, comfortable seats, and soft lighting. The journey, as you know, is the same, but the level of enjoyment you experience as you make it is something quite different.
We should ask ourselves this: away from the train, in what class do we travel in everyday life? Perhaps we’ve got used to a routine that is a little gray, one that is less about smiling and more about grumbling, pushing, and shoving, waste paper tossed on the ground, elbows on the table, swearing, and fingers up noses? We can live well regardless, I think we’d all agree, but it’s a little like traveling in a disastrous second-class carriage.” Words by Giuseppe Zois
In modern society, and despite the fact that a quick trip around the city streets may convince us otherwise, we have once again started to talk about good manners, rules, and control. Subjects that, as well as giving rise to lively debate, also raise various dilemmas. How should we present ourselves? How should we shake hands? Do we speak formally or informally? What subjects are best avoided to prevent any small talk becoming an embarrassing series of gaffes?
The course aims to provide comprehensive answers to these questions, adapting suggestions of Giovanni della Casa to the fancies of modern-day life, digital technology, and social media.
Bon Ton. You cannot have this without education; but you can diligently apply all the rules of common courtesy and not have bon ton