Chapter 17: Speech and Civilization

This chapter presents the argument for a conscious effort with regards to the type and tone of the langue used inside the home. The concept that language is the core building block of civilization, meaning to be a “civil” human being – to act in a “civil” way. “Please” and “Thank You” are not just meaningless phrases that children are taught to curry favour when they want something. Being polite, being courteous to others helps smooth over interpersonal relationships and that is no where more important than in the home. There is a popular saying: “Treat your friends like your relatives and your relatives like your friends.” Why? When we step inside our house and let our guard down do we teach our children, by example, to snarl at each other? What we are doing will become what they will be doing. Are we aware of what we are doing and how we are speaking to them, to our spouse and about others, within the confines of our home?