no absolutes in gender etiquette

In my post “ladylike behavior: things I’ve been doing “wrong” (part 1)”, I discussed how a debutante instructor directs proper “ladies” to introduce a man before a woman when making an introduction, provided the man and woman are of equal position (in age, profession, etc.). This is because, as the instructor explains, in our society men have more power and we are supposed to introduce the person with more power first [1].

Naturally I reject this protocol and instead implement a procedure of random selection of who to introduce first, or a procedure of introducing the woman first as a form of resistance.

But I was reading “Emily Post’s Etiquette, 18th Edition” today, where it says to introduce the woman first, all other aspects being equal. Doesn’t give an explanation. (I’ll ask the authors for one and get back to you).

Just goes to show that nothing is absolute or fixed.




I’ll cite this properly later:  “Emily Post’s Etiquette”. 18th Edition.

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