Jennifer Roback Morse lectures on sex and sexuality at Harvard University

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse

Dr. Morse delivers a talk based on her book “Smart Sex” at Harvard University.

The MP3 file is here. (30 Mb)


  • the hook-up culture and its effects on men and women
  • cohabitation and its effect on marriage stability
  • balancing marriage, family and career
  • single motherhood by choice and IVF
  • donor-conceived children
  • modern sex: a sterile, recreation activity
  • the real purposes of sex: procreation and spousal unity
  • the hormone oxytocin: when it is secreted and what it does
  • the hormone vassopressin: when it is secreted and what it does
  • the sexual revolution and the commoditization of sex
  • the consumer view of sex vs the organic view of sex
  • fatherlessness and multi-partner fertility
  • how the “sex-without-relationship” view harms children

52 minutes of lecture, 33 minutes of Q&A from the Harvard students. The Q&A is worth listening to – the first question is from a gay student, and Dr. Morse pulls a William Lane Craig to defeat her objection. It was awesome! I never get tired of listening to her talk, and especially on the topics of marriage and family.

2 thoughts on “Jennifer Roback Morse lectures on sex and sexuality at Harvard University”

  1. A little disappointing/irritating that the questioners weren’t given a mic. Very hard to hear them.

    I also had problems with the audio stopping when playing it online, so people might want to just download the audio and play it locally/offline.


  2. WK,

    I found Morse to be a somewhat frustrating speaker. At times, her intellect served as a shining example of reasoned clarity to the young students in the audience. Certainly her response to the gay student was well thought out.

    However, I found some of her later Q&A comments to be disappointing. Morse’s overall perspective appears to mirror that of Dr. Laura, another career oriented woman who found out nearly too late that marriage, children, and family mattered to her.

    Both Morse and Dr. Laura’s arguments tend to fall along the following lines:

    Dear Women,

    You thought feminism was the best way to get what you want. Actually, feminism often forces you to lose out on things you will want (marriage, children, family).

    However, you can still “have it all” as feminism has promised. You merely need to re-order your life to get married and have children earlier.

    Further, all of us women that choose this path should make sure that our society never harms a woman’s career path if she decides to have children earlier. (This is something she directly spoke about when referencing how women pursuing either a career in law or higher education could not drop out to have children without harming their advancement in these fields.)

    This above summary is why, despite Morse’s high intelligence and clear thinking, she left me a bit cold. She never for a moment chooses to look at scripture and its definition of marriage and marital roles. She still advocates from a selfish female-oriented position.

    The fact is that women’s burden (from Genesis) remains their need to fight with men for control. This can also be summed up by saying that women have trouble looking at the world through non-selfish perspectives.

    The reality is that many men want and need to be a provider for their wife and children. However, a far smaller want to be their wife’s “life caddy” who will provide them children, then father those children and then support her as she pursues her career dreams in her post-mother life.

    Morse believes that what she wants is what men want. This might have been true in her (second) husband’s case, but it is not true of many marriageable men.

    There are many intelligent women who can speak so well on marriage and family. Morse, Dr. Laura, and even Dr Helen have a great deal of good to say. However, I find that all three share a distinct lack of humility and also lack the self-awareness of their own fallen nature of being selfish.

    In our foundering cultural world today, I believe women that seek change must look within first at their own shortcomings and their need to have, consume, etc. They should seek to find peace through humility rather than merely re-focusing their selfish desire in new directions.

    Perhaps Morse should have a discussion with Voddie Baucham.

    PS thanks for your blog!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s