standards which presumably causednshame, guilt, anxiety and neurosis. Inwon’t attempt to explain to Mr. Talesenthe societal need for guilt; but what Infind baffling is his seemingly total insensitivitynto the conformist demandsnof the contemporary liberationists who,nlike Rousseau, argue that people “shouldnbe forced to be free.”nFor John BuUaro—one of the centralnactors in Thy Neighbor’s Wife—tin investigationninto the orgies at Sandstonen”saw whatever love and order that hadnbeen the stability of his life sacrificednto the whim of experimentation andnchange.” According to Talese, “he wasnalone, jobless, without a sense of hope.”nYet the Bullaro episode is told and dismissednlike an unpleasant exception tonthe wondrous generalization. Membersnof a stable family unsheathed from thenboundaries of respectable behavior consentnto adultery with different partnersnand find that their lives sink into a cesspoolnof drink, loveless sex, therapy, divorcenand loneliness.nAs I recount this experience fromnTalese’s book, I am reminded of IrvingnKristol’s argument that “whole classesnof the population … are entering whatncan only be called, in the strictly clinicalnsense, a phase of infantile regression.”nWith Abraham Maslow as its spiritualnfather, this generation of libertariansndemands actualization which usuallyntakes the form of sexual indulgence.nHow can I be a better person, it is argued,nif I am not permitted self-expression?nTo hell with two hundred years ofnthis American social contract. Whoncares about four thousand years of civilization?nWhy concern oneself with bourgeoisnmorality? As a disciple of JerrynRubin’s logic, Talese contends, if itnfeels good, do it.nThe guru at Sandstone—the communenmuch admired by Talese as thenvanguard of sexual reform—is JohnnWilliamson, a part-time engineer whonbecame a self-proclaimed philosopher bynreading the novels of Ayn Rand. Williamsonntells his adherents to feel free,nopen up, fulfill their sexual fantasies.n12 inChronicles of CulturenBut when Humpty Dumpty has his greatnfall, Williamson is not around to picknup the pieces. After all, he’s preachingnfreedom from all ties, even those thatnmight assuage the feelings of loneliness.nThat Mr. Williamson is an erstwhilenengineer may not be coincidental. Sexnat Sandstone—at least the sexual encountersndescribed by Talese —arenreminiscent of an instructional manualnfor Tinker Toys. Missing from the descriptionnare love, mystery and celebration.nSex has about as much poignancynas automobile mechanics and is engagednin for the same reason: it requires doing.nWe are told that our humanity is enhancednby open sexuality, but no proofnfor it can be found in Talese’s text.n” An/autonomous Man” has always beennthe goal of liberationists in our midst.nAnd civilization unquestionably has alwaysnstruggled with the need for socialnorder and a competing desire for pleasure-givingnexperiences. But as any postadolescentnknows, life isn’t all pleasure.nInhibitions can create a social cohesionnthat results in stability and the attendantnvalue of repose. At a time when moralitynis determined by people of the couch, notnthose of the cloth, it is understandablenthat Thy Neighbor’s Wife is considerednan important book.nThe contemporary search for absolutenfreedom is irresistible. Talese carriesnthe sexual banner marching to the drumbeatnof sexual awareness. Yet the ironynin this movement seems to escape him.nFor if any man is free, why associate withnthose who, by virtue of the association,nlimit that freedom? The natural concomitantnof this argument is that thosenwho are free are also without associations,nexcept, of course, those associationsnthat gratify immediate desires.nSince any relationship presumes somendegree of commitment, autonomousnman must guard against a genuineninvolvement with others. As a consequencendivorce rates soar as each of thenmates considers himself a free spirit.nInstitutions like Sandstone are thenncreated for the free spirits to come together.nCuriously, when these free spiritsndo find meaning through associations,nthey exhibit a loyalty that borders onnzealotry, a zealotry that often leadsnfreedom to the sacrificial altar of thenmuch-ballyhooed “purposeful life.”nHollywood has discovered Talese, andnI’m afraid the Zeitgeist will duplicatenthe book with a variety of clones. We arenlikely to hear three cheers for sexualnfreedom from the rooftops of Cosmopolitan,nPlayboy and Al Goldstein’s scurrilousnpublications. But when thenshouting is subdued, when people arenunwilling to accept conventional restraints,nand when freedom’s real meaningnis unraveled, human relationshipsnwill have lost their loveliness and wenwill be in jeopardy of substituting sexnfor love at the same time we vocallyndefend a need for universal love. DnBooklets from the Rockford College institute:nA New Message by Jackson Pemberton. A series of essays examiningncurrent political issues in the context of the views and priorities expressednby the Founding Fathers.nThe Family: America’s Hope. Speeches from an Institute conferencenwhich analyzed cultural forces operating to the detriment of the familynand suggested the means for counteracting them.nThe Alternative Media: Dismantling Two Centuries of Progress bynFrancis M. Watson, Jr. A detailed look at the alternative press and theirnpowerful, but largely unrecognized, influence in undermining the principlesnand institutions of the free society.nWrite Rockford College Institute,n5050 East State Street, Rockford, Illinois 61101.nnn