Another tremendous hat tip to Tea at Trianon!
Has the definition of vulgarity changed over the years? How does it change our behavior? Our actions? Our words? The way we dress? Small bit below, in its entirety here.
“Stupidity and vulgarity are harder to put up with than sin, harder on the nerves.”~Flannery O’Connor
Emily Post herself always emphasized that good taste and good manners have nothing to do with money but with sensitivity to the feelings of others by not making ourselves the center of attention. Mrs. Post especially lamented vulgarity in women’s clothes and behavior, saying:
Vulgar clothes are those which, no matter what the fashion of the moment may be, are always too elaborate for the occasion; too exaggerated in style, or have accessories out of proportion. People of uncultivated taste are apt to fancy distortions; to exaggerate rather than modify the prevailing fashions.
For example:…The woman of uncultivated taste has no more sense of moderation than the Queen of the Cannibals….She despises sensible clothing; she also despises plain fabrics and untrimmed models. She also cares little (apparently) for staying at home, since she is perpetually seen at restaurants and at every public entertainment. The food she orders is rich, the appearance she makes is rich; in fact, to see her often is like nothing so much as being forced to eat a large amount of butter—plain.
I think it can still be agreed that showing off in any way is vulgar, especially if it has to do with flaunting newly acquired wealth. Also, four letter words are vulgar, as I think most people would agree, as well as public discussions of private bodily functions. We have to remember that everyone is not a voyeur and that many are probably not interested in hearing about what goes on (or does not go on) in our private lives.