Invoking Emily Post (podcast)

Nov 10th, 2017 | By | Category: Featured Articles, podcast, the show
Emily Post Etiquette, 18th Edition

Emily Post Etiquette, 18th Edition

“Etiquette isn’t about being snobby or mean-spirited,” came Peggy Post’s reply when I asked her what etiquette is not.

Peggy is great-granddaughter-in-law of the doyenne of doing right, Emily Post, as well as the Director of the Emily Post Institute.

Peggy told me etiquette is a fluid set of guidelines that helps all of us–no matter our socioeconomic backgrounds–to navigate life in a manner that does the most good and least harm.

The most recent book in the Post franchise is an updated version of the original 1922 tome. Emily Post’s Etiquette, 18th Edition is subtitled Manners for a New World.

The first revision since 2004, this updated guidebook of courteous living covers what you might expect, such as everyday manners, how to set a table, accept a dinner invitation, and how to comportĀ  yourself when out and about.

It also covers modern-day subjects like texting, e-mail, the hazards of Facebook, and even gives a nod to same sex marriage.

When I asked Peggy how Emily Post would react to today’s modern world, she laughed and said she thought Emily would be intrigued, but not horrified as everyone suspects.

“Emily recognized that people are who they are,” she told me, “and that most people want to keep discord and missteps to a minimum, even if it doesn’t always work out that way.”

At just over 700 pages, and probably close to 4 pounds, Emily Post’s Etiquette, 18th Edition : Manners for a New World, is bound to have answers for nearly all of life’s questions.


This is an encore broadcast of the show, which originally aired in 2011, and included a giveaway. Comments below reflect that.


Theme & incidental music by Jason Shaw,

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  1. This holiday season I will be joining my live in boyfriend’s family for the first time instead of my own. I’m very nervous and this book would really help!

    My worst social blunder to date is mentioning that I was very proud if my homeschooled fried chicken infringe of my ex-boyfriend’s grandmother who had win numerous awards for her own chicken fried steak. After trying to back out she insisted that bring a plate of chicken next Sunday dinner. Needless to say, I lost.

  2. I think my save is probably the face that I never arrive empty-handed, and I always hand write a little note (seriously little. like a postcard.) afterwards and I think those two things have saved me from my big-mouthed blunders. Usually.

  3. Two Thanksgivings ago, I learned that there really is a difference between sweet potatoes and yams. Thank goodness a nearby restaurant was open on Thanksgiving for a last-minute pick-up that saved the day.

  4. If Ms. Post’s best advice is to be ungrateful toward guests who went out of their way to bring a dish to your gathering, then I can really do without this snooty tome.

  5. Oh no, I think you misunderstood, Rene. I’m sorry if it wasn’t clear, and I will take responsibility for that. Ms. Post said to BE grateful, and to definitely and always thank the guest for their the dish. She also said that if the host did not ask their guests to bring a dish to the meal, the host (per the rules of etiquette) is not obliged to serve it at that particular meal. The host should, however let the guest know they will enjoy it at another meal. Nevertheless, if it will cause hurt feelings, she did say that being a good host means making all your guest feel appreciated and comfortable, and that in that spirit, the host may decide to serve the dish. Cecilia

  6. Worst social blunder was running into a friend I hadn’t seen in months and making a huge fuss over her incredible weight loss. I went on and on, until I’m sure I made her uncomfortable. I related this soon after to another mutual friend who revealed to me that our friend was seriously ill. This experience has reinforced the rule to never ask if a chubby friend is expecting, and never assume weight loss is always a positive.

  7. I have an older version of Emily Posts etiquette book that was a gift from many years ago. I would love to have an updated copy.
    My biggest social blunders are from when I was younger and would get nervous at large gatherings and say the wrong things.

  8. My biggest blunder was taking a cheesy meat lasagna to a Jewish potluck. I have since learned the importance of separating meat and dairy in Jewish cuisine.