Philip Hensher

Manners maketh the Englishman

Keith Thomas describes how English notions of civility and consideration turned into a mission to civilise the world

In the gap between what we feel ourselves to be and what we imagine we might in different circumstances become, lies civility. Keith Thomas’s marvellous new book addresses the subject of ideal behaviour. It shows the way that early modern England formed notions of civilisation and proper conduct, in contrast to what was termed ‘the Other’.

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