Elizabeth Austin


Talking Points

But what are the implications for social life, and for society itself, if we lose the basic ability to listen, to ponder, and to respond–the ability to converse? It was with those thoughts in mind that I welcomed’ the publication of Stephen Miller’s Conversation: A History of a Declining Art, which promised to be an… Read more »

Missed Manners

Within minutes, we were at the emergency room, where a cluster of security guards stood glued to the blaring football game on the television. Frantic, I started to sign in. “Speak up, please,” the triage nurse barked testily above the televised din. “I can’t hear you.” I helped my dry-heaving husband to the bathroom, then… Read more »

In Contempt of Courtship

As host, Ms. Lewinsky functions as Hayley’s on-site girlfriend, giggling with her at hidden-camera footage that shows the suitors misbehaving at a party and helping her to make the undoubtedly difficult decision to dump the guy who slipped off into a bathroom to share a few intimate moments with a hula dancer. The show has… Read more »