• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This highly original book explains the sweeping changes to twentieth-century regimes of manners and self. Broad in scope and deep in analytic reach, it provides a wealth of empirical evidence to demonstrate how changes in the code of manners and emotions in four countries (Germany, Netherlands, England and the US) have undergone increasing informalization. From the growing taboo toward the displays of superiority and inferiority and diminishing social and psychological distance between people, it reveals an 'emancipation of emotions' and the new representation of emotion at the centre of personality. This thought-provoking book traces:" The increasing permissiveness in public and private manners, such as introductions, the use of personal pronouns, social kissing, dancing, and dating " The ascent and integration of a wide variety of groups - including the working classes, women, youth and immigrants - and the sweeping changes this has imposed on relations of social inferiority and superiority" The shifts in self-regulation that require manners to seem 'natural', at ease and authentic " Rising external social constraints towards being reflexive, showing presence of mind, considerateness, role-taking, and the ability to tolerate and control conflicts, to compromise" Growing interdependence and social integration, declining power differences and the diminishing social and psychic distance between peopleContinuing the analysis of Sex and Manners, this book is a dazzling work of historical sociology and a fascinating read.

Introductions and Friendships, Forms of Address, and other Differences in National Habitus Formation
Introductions and friendships, forms of address, and other differences in national habitus formation
General Outline of National Developments

The comparison of American, Dutch, English, and German manners books reveals several significant national differences not only with regard to a variety of specific topics but also to the genre as a whole. In this chapter, a few of these differences will be discussed, particularly those that illuminate specifics in national habitus formation.

Since the USA was a ‘new nation’ with an enormously varied population, ranging from black slaves to rich landowning and commercial patricians – but no formal, hereditary aristocracy – its integration processes differed in many ways from those in ‘old nations’. Usually, the lack ...

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