Book Reviews

Book by P.M. Forni 
Review by Amy Burns
Academic Advisor
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville


Civility is something that affects us in our daily lives, whether we are at work or home. Forni (2008) has provided guidelines to help conduct our daily lives to promote civil behavior. The book consists of two parts. 

The first part of the book addresses wisdom and skills. I found the wisdom and skills section to be the most beneficial. He explains two different types of rudeness, unfocused and focused. He explains how these types of rudeness are caused and what they do to us. The second part of the book addresses situations and solutions. Forni gives many examples of incivility we may face and how to react to them. This section did not seem as strong to me because many of the examples may not pertain to situations you may face. Reading the solutions however is still important because they could help you with other situations that were not given as examples.

The basis of the book promotes self-reflection. Forni notes, those who actively practice civility tend to experience less rudeness. Rudeness is a serious issue in life because it can cause stress, low self-esteem, relationship problems, difficulties at work, violence and health issues. If we plan ahead and think about the rude situations we may face and how to react and handle them we are giving ourselves the advantage when we are faced with those situations.

Academic advisors may face incivility on a daily basis whether it is from colleagues, parents, students or the world outside of work. This book can serve as a reminder for how to handle rudeness and promote civility on campus. I recommend this book not only to academic advisors but also, to anyone who has ever faced incivility. 

The author Forni, is considered one of the leading experts in the field of civility. He has several other books that discuss the topic of civility. Choosing Civility: The twenty-five rules of considerate conduct is excellent book to follow-up with after finishing The Civility Solution.


The Civility Solution: What to do when people are rude. (2008). Book by P.M. Forni. Review by Amy Burns. New York: Palgrave Macmillian. 160 pp., $12.99, (paperback), ISBN # 978-0-312-36849-4
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