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The Modern Gentleman and the Clash of Mindsets

The reader is a big fan of the GC website but questions how the concept of the gentleman applies to the modern world.

Picture: Boggi Milano

The reader is a big fan of the GC website but questions how the concept of the gentleman applies to the modern world. He feels the traditional image (suits, history, etc.) clashes with modern values. He asks if the core principles of a gentleman (etiquette, respect) can coexist with modern preferences (interior design choices).


Question from Mr. Dr V. (real name is undisclosed):

Dear GC,

First of all, I’d like to start off by saying I am a big fan of the GC site and regularly read your articles. Congratulations on the amazing work!

That being said, my question is around the gentleman in the modern world and how the gentleman’s mindset changes when it comes to the modern world. Whenever we think of the ideal gentleman, the mental image most would see is a man wearing a traditional suit with a long history. Even a lot of your articles mention this like in the Poyo vs Gentleman, there is repeated mention of history and respecting those before youA lot of the old money articles seem to point towards this as well.  Even other resources look at traditional mindset and lifestyle.  For me while I see the value of this and respect this, I find it often clashes with modern mindsets. For example, is liking modern interior design a poyo quality?  If I’m a first generation striving to learn these qualities, am I just a peacock?  I find that a lot of the values and philosophies clash with the modern values. I realize one argument can be that striving to be a gentleman is not about wearing a suit, money, being a lord or lady but rather the etiquette which I agree with however I’m not sure the world in general sees the same definition of I do. 

I’d be very interested on your view.

Kind regards,

Dr. V.

Answer by The Gentleman:

Hey there, Dr. V.!

Thank you for reaching out and for being a dedicated reader of Gentleman's Code! We truly appreciate your support.

You raise an excellent point about the evolution of the gentleman in the modern world. While traditional elements like history and respecting those who came before us remain valuable, the modern gentleman certainly needs to adapt and embrace the present. Change is the only constant right?

Here's our take:

Modern aesthetics: Absolutely! A gentleman can appreciate contemporary design alongside classic styles. It's about expressing your individual taste with thoughtfulness and care. The key is not trying too hard and to design the aesthetic in simplicity. That is the epitome of sophistication.

Modernity and Tradition Can Coexist: While we highlight classic styles and historical figures, we also strive to showcase how these principles manifest in the contemporary world. Embracing modern design doesn't make you a poyo – it shows you're a gentleman who appreciates aesthetics that resonate with your taste.

First-Generation Gentlemen: There is a conception of the first-gen lacking in refinement and good taste. But that is okay. The journey of becoming a gentleman is multi-generational and does not stop with your own life. As the first-gen, you are blessed with drive and ambition (think of JFK's father - Joseph P. Kennedy), while your bloodline might be blessed with elegance and nonchalance (think of JFK or Danial Deen Isa Kalebic). However, learning the gentleman values is not a peacock quality, it is something to be deeply admired instead. The gentleman journey is open to everyone, regardless of background. It's about actively cultivating those core values and applying them in your daily life to be the most refined version of yourself, and setting an example to your bloodline. You're not a peacock; you're someone actively striving for a noble quest. That is classy!

Etiquette is the Core: You're absolutely right. At its heart, being a gentleman isn't about specific clothing, wealth, or lineage. It's about having core values that epitomize distinction, standard, and elegance. These values translate beautifully into modern life.

There's definitely a gap between the romanticized image of the gentleman and how the world perceives it today. However, the core values remain timeless and adaptable. We believe Gentleman's Code plays a role in bridging that gap by showcasing how these principles translate into the modern world, regardless of background or personal style. We are not perfect and continuously learning too.

We'd love to hear more about your perspective! Perhaps you could share your thoughts on how you reconcile modern sensibilities with the values of a gentleman in an article for GC?

Best regards,

The Gentleman

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Gentlemen's Code has your back! We're thrilled to announce our brand new section on our website: "Ask the Gentleman". Submit your burning questions on all things relationships, culture, style, and etiquette by emailing to: editor@gentlemanscodes.com.

Our experts are here to guide you on your path to becoming a true gentleman.

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