Social Graces in Contemporary Society
Discuss about the Social Graces in Modern Society.
Assumingly you get into a bus and see an old, blind grandmother standing while teens are sited, how will you feel, disgusted right? Sitting while a blind grandmother is standing in the bus is lack of skills vital to public etiquette. Social graces are the skills that enable a person to interact with others politely and socially in a public place. The skills of social graces are what we experience in our daily lives and they are part and parcel of socialization. Most of us have ever been in a public place where people are interacting politely, and with respect, all of a sudden someone comes and disrupts the friendly atmosphere and causes chaos. Some skills are primary to the interaction in public places. The skills are what is referred to as the social graces. The skills that constitute social graces are like manners, etiquette, deportment, refinement, and fashion (Carter, 2008). Society cab is not complete without the social graces. The essay is rationed to address the contextual activities in society that are not acceptable and that which result due to lack of social graces skills. This discussion is, therefore, going to examine the reasons for lack of social graces in modern society and how we can create more awareness on the importance of the skills of social graces.
Social graces in modern society are changing and are not comparable with that of our ancestors. Our ancestors did practice their social graces well and they maintained that skill in order to have peaceful coexistence. The contemporary society lacks the social graces. The social graces of the contemporary society are degrading due to major factors that accrue from a range of factors (Silver, 1990). In the pre-historic societies, men and women were full of social graces skills and would pass them to their juniors through tales and stories in the evenings. The parents, especially the aged were mandated to offer teachings and training to the children, especially in the traditional African societies. The evidence that gives a clear distinction is that, in the old Asian communities, the etiquette was taught through the approach of plays and songs (Shils, 1991). The songs and the play contained the message of etiquette and social graces in overall. However, in the modern society, social graces are taught through formal education and also through training. An apparent change of the social graces in the two epochs.
The lack of social graces in the contemporary society is attributed to three major aspects. These aspects are as a result of human activities and the motives that the individuals have during their childhood development and the parental care. The first factor is a sheltered childhood, in which a person may find themselves grown to older age in a confined environment that they did not get that socialization and teachings (Chevalier, 2009). The second factor is the poor social skill role model, in which the person may have been brought up or spent most of the juvenile age bracket with someone not good to model as they grew up (Carter, 1998). The third factor is consistent use of technology especially smartphones.
Sheltered childhood is the major factor as a cause of lack of social graces in our society. The current society of the contemporary society is made of households at which children are attending school from as early as four years of age to 19 without having that social time or moment to share views and ideas with the elders (Himmelfarb, 1996). The modern society is not like the pre-historic society at which children would take their time in the evening with their grand pa and grand ma as they listen to the stories that teachers or conveyed a message on etiquette. Researches indicates that, 1 out of 4 children are lacking etiquette and social graces in general due to sheltered childhood (Himmelfarb, 1996). In this instance, therefore, the sheltered kid will grow up without the socially accepted normative values, and as such we tend to see and increased number of people lacking etiquette in public. The reason is that they never had that timer to share information and teachings from the parents.
Poor social skill and model is also a major factor that has maintained the lack of social grace in the contemporary society. A social skill model is a person whom the child will imitate and get training from. The model models the social behaviors of the child so that, in their future life they will be fully equipped with the social graces skill. Researchers that have been conducted on the factors that cause lack of social graces in the public domain found out that, in 2 out of 3 children brought up by unsociable parents will be lacking etiquette (Meyer & Jepperson, 2000).
The children brought up in such a family will grow up, but will blame their parents for lack of that parental care and teaching. Such children will always have a problem in staying politely with the public. For instance, while in class, the child may be talking things that need to be said in a private place. The child will lack that distinction of the audience while uttering some words.
Poor Social Skill and Model
The other primary factor in the contemporary society that has resulted to a reduced social graces or etiquette is consistent use of technology. Lenhart, (2015) asserts that the widespread availability of smartphones has facilitated 24% of teens to go online nearly continuously. Due to the convenience of internet access guaranteed by technological advancement, 92% of teens reported going online each and every day, and in this sample, it included the 24% of adolescents who said to go online regularly. It is astonishing to realize that only two percent of teens reported going online weekly.
Based on these facts, therefore, the teens that constantly go online are not just going online to read books or global news but social media and other social activities going on on the web. The videos that they watch online have a repercussion on her lives. The teens have adapted the ways of lives more so the dressing styles of the celebrities they watch online. Nowadays teens are seen wearing clothes that totally predispose body parts. Girls wear transparent clothes that display their breasts, and also miniskirts that expose the almost whole of their thighs. This has therefore caused the teens to lack social skills acceptable in the society.
Awareness in the community should be on how social grace can be improved. Creating awareness is an approach on which the parents and the guardians are trained and alerted on the importance of the social graces. The target group in the awareness on the importance of social graces is the parents. The awareness should focus on how the sheltered childhood, constant use of technology and poor social skill model can adequately be handled. Sheltered childhood should get tackled in a way that the children offered a chance to get exposed to various activities in society that may improve their social skills.
Constant use of technology should also get controlled in a way that the teens restricted from accessing smartphones, and lastly, poor social competence model can be controlled through the provision of a model who would train children on social etiquette. As much as the children can be educated on how to have that social grace in public place, the parent is the person who is always with the kids and is the best trainer (Carter, 1998).
The essay examined the reasons for lack of social graces in modern society and how we can create more awareness on the importance of the skills of social graces. Social graces are the skills that enable a person to interact with others politely in a public place socially. The society deserves the etiquette socially acceptable to all. The lack of social graces in the modern society is attributed to three broad factors: Sheltered childhood, Poor social skill and model, and consistent use of technology. The research is limited to the findings on the basis that the approximations and generalizability of the samples may not have given the actual value of the intended population. The solution can be reached by conducting a thorough research and conducting literature review that will assist in the final conclusion. It is a recommendation that awareness should be created in the community on how social grace can be improved, and the target is the parents. The projection on the way the social graces are in the contemporary society is that, the future will have a generation that lacks social graces.
Carter, S. L. (1998). Civility: Manners, morals, and the etiquette of democracy. Basic Books (AZ).
Carter, S. L. (2008). Civility: Manners, morals, and the etiquette of democracy. Basic Books (AZ).
Chevalier, M. (2009). Society, manners and politics in the United States: being a series of letters on North America. Weeks, Jordan.
Crossley, N. (2006). Reflexive Embodiment in Contemporary Society: The Body in Late Modern Society. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).
Himmelfarb, G. (1996). The de-moralization of society: From Victorian virtues to modern values.
Meyer, J. W., & Jepperson, R. L. (2000). The ‘actors’ of modern society: The cultural construction of social agency. Sociological theory, 18(1), 100-120.
Shils, E. (1991). The virtue of civil society. Government and opposition,26(01), 3-20.
Silver, A. (1990). Friendship in commercial society: Eighteenth-century social theory and modern sociology. American Journal of Sociology, 1474-1504.
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