Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Must...Finish....Paper

Say a little prayer for me. Actually say one for all college students right now (St. Thomas Aquinas is patron saint of students, right? Good one, too, since he's probably the smartest person who ever lived). It's a busy, stressful, utterly chaotic time. I don't know about you, but I think the last week of class is worse than exam week itself. It's basically the same amount of schoolwork while still having to go to class daily.

Anyway, right now I'm working on (procrastinating?) a paper for my 20th century European intellectual history course (I've actually got a few posts in mind about material from this course, but I might not get around to it for another few weeks). The paper's on Konrad Adenauer, a devout Catholic who was West Germany's first postwar chancellor. He stressed the primacy of the individual over the state and the need for Europe to return to its Christian roots. There was also some controversy surrounding him because he was not aggressive in the prosecution of former Nazis (most of them mid to low level; the big guys he was active in supporting the prosecution of) and, in fact, had many of them work in his government. He did this actually because he thought an aggressive Nazi witch hunt so soon after the war would only lead to fragmentation of German society and destroy any attempt at the unity that was needed to rebuild the country. Germans collectively had helped bring Hitler to power, he argued, and Germans collectively needed to pick up the pieces. Additionally, he had a country to run and he needed people who knew how to handle the day-to-day operations of the country.

The paper's actually not due until Thursday and I have 2 pages (of 12) done, so compared to some of my peers, I'm ahead of the game! Thing is, even though the subject really interests me, I just don't feel like writing the paper. I guess that's what everyone's feeling right now. If you see a flurry of posts by me in the late hours of the night, that's because I'm avoiding writing the paper.