Good and bad manners make up the social rules of a
country. They are not always easy to learn because they are
often not written down in books. For example, British women
didn't go into pubs at the beginning of this century because
it was not considered respectable behaviour for a woman.
Now both women and men drink freely is pubs and women
are fully integrated into public life. Visitors to Britain are
often surprised by the strange behaviour of the inhabitants.
One of the worst mistakes is to get on a bus without waiting
your turn in the queue. The other people in the queue will
probably complain loudly! Queuing is a national habit and it
is considered polite or good manners to wait for your turn.
In some countries it is considered bad manners to eat in
the street, whereas in Britain it is common to see people having
a snack whilst walking down the road, especially at lunchtime.
Britons may be surprised to see young children in restaurants
in the evening because children are not usually taken out to
restaurants late at night. And if they make a noise in public
or in a restaurant it is considered very rude. In recent years
children are playing a more active role and they are now accepted
in many pubs and restaurants.
In recent years smoking has received a lot of bad publicity,
and fewer British people now smoke. Many companies have
banned smoking from their offices and canteens. Smoking
is now banned on the London Underground, in cinemas and
theaters and most buses. It's becoming less and less acceptable
to smoke in a public place. It is considered rude or bad manners
to smoke in someone's house without permission.
Social rules are an important part of our culture as they
passed down through history. The British have an expression
for following these "unwritten rules": "When in Rome, do as
the Romans do".
1. What make the social rules of a country?
2. What was respectable behaviour for a woman in 20th
3. What do you know about queuing?
4. What do you think about smoking?
5. What is the important part of our culture?