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Re: courtesy and respect - random thoughts
Poster: Mark Schuldenfrei <schuldy@abel.MATH.HARVARD.EDU>
i have an open question (or several) for the populace: do you feel that a
hypothetical royal such-and-such deserves more courtesy than a
hypothetical lord so-and-so? more respect? (if so, why?) how do you
define the difference between courtesy and respect?
Interesting. I'll take a shot.
More courtesy? No, we should always be polite to each other, as polite as is
appropriate to the moment. In some ways, we should be even more polite to the
"lesser ranks", because they represent our future. (Grace toward ones social
inferiors was not exactly a period virtue: in this I hope we would represent
the romanticized visions of period, and not the gritty reality.)
More respect? Respect is given where it is deserved by the target, and I
wouldn't feel safe to generalize. As a rule, I would wish that the higher
level personages were worthy of more respect than average: but reality
The difference between the two was nicely summarized by you, Melys. Courtesy
is how one treats with others: respect is how one thinks of others. One can
treat utmost cad with the ultimate in courtesy, and one can have the greatest
respect for someone that you are also having a bit of fun with.
In private mail, someone suggested to me that one should treat Royalty on this
list as if they were posting in persona. I disagree. Most of us are not
acting in persona, and would find it odd to be so treated. But most of us
don't think about it. I've seen plenty of lists where "they weren't official
unless they said they were", and the lists were much better off for it.
Besides, they were "just folks" before they were elevated to a Royal position:
and I bet they would still like to talk and think as if they are the people
they always were.
But so much of what we discuss here is mundane. As I wrote in that email:
Basically, my persona wouldn't use email: neither would yours. We often talk
about such issues as Society Events, armor rules and regulations, driving
directions, and so forth: they aren't period at all.
Melys, I think you hit a good point. On this list, we should treat each other
with courtesy, no matter who we are. If we do that, no other special
treatment need apply.
When I sign myself Tibor, it is mostly for identification purposes. Events
are for being in persona. Lists are for talking about the issues that let us
be in persona. This is why I don't tend to play the "game" of The Merry Rose,
or Cheapside, or The Tavern Yard, or Middlebridge, or the Rialto, or The
Cathedral Steps. It just us folks, talking about our game, and not really
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