Sorry, Sorry, Sorry Cover

Sorry Sorry Sorry: The Case for Good Apologies

We’ve all been on the receiving end of bad apologies, and oh, how they make us seethe. Even when we don’t personally know the person apologizing, a terrible public apology —excuse-laden, victim blame-y, weaselly—often goes viral instantaneously. All of us recognize lousy apologies when we hear them. So why is it so hard to apologize well? How can we do better? How could they do better? 

Drawing on a deep well of research in psychology, sociology, law, and medicine, Marjorie Ingall and Susan McCarthy, creators of the apology watchdog site SorryWatch, [link to]  explain why a good apology is hard to find and why it doesn’t have to be. Alongside their six (and a half!)-step formula for apologizing beautifully, Ingall and McCarthy delve into how to respond to a bad apology; why celebrities, corporations, and governments seldom apologize well; how to teach children to apologize; how gender and race affect both apologies and forgiveness; and most of all, why good apologies are essential, powerful, and restorative. A good apology can do so many things—mend fences, heal wounds, and bring more harmony into ourselves and our society at large. With wit, deep introspection, and laugh-out-loud humor, Ingall and McCarthy’s guidance will help make the world a better place, one apology at a time.

“I was hooked from page one by this hip, funny, uncompromising, and unapologetic dissection of good and bad apologies and why they matter…. This witty, utterly human book is a timely guide to a moral future.”

—Harriet Lerner, Ph.D.  Author of The Dance of Anger and Why Won’t You Apologize?

Sorry, Sorry, Sorry allows us to make genuine, reparative apologies that connect us to each other and avoid business and relationship disasters. What’s not to love about saying sorry, if you know how to do it with grace?”

—Farai Chideya, host of Our Body Politic and author of The Episodic Career