Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

So right after mentioning her new book in the post below, I noticed that NRO has posted a fine interview with Mary Eberstadt , in which she implies that, just as the medical facts about cigarettes’ harm eventually came to be undeniable, so will the sociological facts about the sexual revolution’s harm.

An exaggeration for rhetorical effect, no doubt. Because we are never going to be able to return to an era where non-marital sex is looked down upon in the (quite double-standard-governed) way it was pre-1966. And no democratic governments will ever again try to ban contraceptives the way Connecticut’s did ( Not that there’s anything Unconstitutional about that! )prior to Griswold v. Connecticut . That toothpaste is out of the tube, and so the incentive for denial about the sociological evidence will remain high.

But all that is besides the main point. On the basis of her devastating 2008 essay in FT, “The Vindication of Humane Vitae,” which is less about the papal teaching than a comprehensive review of the now-overwhelming evidence of the sexual revolution’s net harm to humanity, I’m willing to bet her new book is an essential read.

You should at least read the FT essay.

Dear Reader,

We launched the First Things 2023 Year-End Campaign to keep articles like the one you just read free of charge to everyone.

Measured in dollars and cents, this doesn't make sense. But consider who is able to read First Things: pastors and priests, college students and professors, young professionals and families. Last year, we had more than three million unique readers on

Informing and inspiring these people is why First Things doesn't only think in terms of dollars and cents. And it's why we urgently need your year-end support.

Will you give today?

Make My Gift

Comments are visible to subscribers only. Log in or subscribe to join the conversation.



Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles