Tag: sexual liberation

ACF PoMoCon #31: Marriage Problems


So the podcast’s back after our long election-to-inauguration holiday. America’s still standing, thank God, but the madness continues, which we’ll have to bear the best we can. Today, I bring you one of my scholarly friends, Scott Yenor, who has a wonderful book on the successes and failures of feminism: Choice as far as the eye can see, and unhappiness on its heels. It’s called The Recovery Of Family Life and it analyzes the feminism, sexual liberation, and contemporary liberalism ideas and policies, and their unintended consequences. Scott points out that the great middle-class republic seems to be turning into a different regime because of family problems: Family is rare among the poor–but even though it is dominant among the rich, it is superfluous rather than foundational. Marriage comes last.

Fake Realism on Sex


The other day I read our own @rachellu’s review of the new book by Mark Regnerus, provocatively and moralistically called Cheap Sex. The review is a balm upon the heart, so go read it. The book itself is receiving more praise then I can catalog here — it’s science and it’s reassuring for conservatives. The facts are in and they’re what you’d expect: liberated America is a sexual marketplace, and that’s a wasteland.

I’ll skip the topographical survey of the wasteland. Writer and reviewer both agree with most among us that we’re long on problems and short on solutions; and most — but not all — our predictions are grim. We’re shamelessly theoretical about our catalogs of facts — no prudes we! And then we’re hopelessly impractical about doing anything about all this stuff we think we know. Am I the only one to find this hilarious, that we’re hard at work, most earnestly and morally, to prove that knowledge is a source of impotence? This is not to say anything against either author. They didn’t cause this mismatch between the power of our science and the impotence of our politics.

Let’s talk about the problems with our science, because that’s where we seem to turn to ask for knowledge that works, that helps us out. We can call it political science or social science or psychology or evolutionary biology. What we want to get out of it is knowledge about ourselves as human beings. The problem here is that we ourselves are split between theory and practice.* You might say that theory is a talking brain like Stephen Hawking, trying to know the cosmos, and practice is back on Earth, him turning his wife into a nurse and then a nurse into a wife, because someone has to care for the body while the mind is roaming. But let’s not start with our healthcare crisis…