Contemplating a Coup

Mitchell, Peter M.  The Coup at Catholic University: The 1968 Revolution in American Catholic Education.  San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2015.

A good little text on the whole.  It does fail to play out the nation-wide dynamics a bit.  Also, the back-cover review that states that "rigidity" was partially to blame for the overreaction is really only partial.  Myself frustrated with the low intellectual quality of the training (and writing / preaching) of many priests and bishops, I think that it's important to notice that Mitchell also pays heed to the practical bent of the bishops during these days.  They were "brick and mortar" men.  I suspect that they did not themselves suspect the depths to which things would sink.  Many of them backed down too quickly, and too few of them marshaled the intellectual profundity needed to respond to the rebels of the day.  Alas.  I have been reading notes from the somewhat obscure (but wildly inspiring) Fr. Austin Woodbury, SM.  Men like him show well that theology and philosophy in the 50s-60s could be incredibly rich and technical.  I suspect that there was just a lot of mediocrity here in the US, surprise surprise.  We are not a contemplative people.  (And let us note that mediocrity can come in the form of academic activism as well - publish, publish, publish....)

I do feel a little bad for Curran.  Mitchell does do his best to be balanced.  However, it is hard for him not to come off as a brash young man.  Once again, knowing that theology should end on one's knees, and that the light of virtual revelation (i.e. the light of theology) itself demands to give way not only to formal revelation (i.e. faith) but above all to the savoring of Divine Things by the Spirit's gift of wisdom, I find it truly sad that Curran's theology was so "earthy", when theology is above all about heavenly things.

It also should tell us something about the Roman Universities where he was trained....

Also, I think that a history should be written about the saintly Jude Dougherty, who led the school of philosophy through the hard days.  But, someone else will have to do that, it seems.