The New Semester Begins!

6 01 2010

Today, the bright new semester dawned with…one hour of class.  It’s Econ 401, Intermediate Microeconomics—basically Econ 101 with calculus.  I think I should be able to handle it thanks to my short-lived attempt at engineering, which required me to take math classes up to Calc IV.  Fun.

But all in all, this semester should go pretty well.  I’m satisfied with my performance from last semester, and if I can maintain the same GPA with the same relatively minuscule (excluding the work I did on some Russian Lit papers) expenditure of effort, I’ll be able to coast through the next three semesters while focusing on things that actually interest me.

Oh, and for those who care, I’m also taking Spanish 102 (yeah, I’m pretty much fluent by this point), Statistics, and the Origins of Nazism.  I’m anticipating the Nazism class will be the most interesting, and I’ve already started to read one of the books for the course:  Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland.

I’m sure I’ll have more to say as the class progresses, but the most shocking thing I’ve read about so far, perhaps surprisingly, is not the atrocities committed by ordinary Germans “just following orders”—but rather the seeming lack of resistance on the part of the Jews who were being rounded up and loaded on to cattle cars.  Did they really believe they were going to be “resettled” somewhere other than a concentration camp?

From what I’ve read so far, a force of ten or so Nazis was able to corral thousands of Jews; did the Jews not realize that they could have easily overcome their captors, stolen their weapons, and turned the tides (or at least have inspired some fear?).  I hope this aspect of the Holocaust is explored, since it really bothers (and depresses) me.

In any case, I’ve resolved to do daily updates, come hell or high water, this semester.  We’ll see how long that lasts.  If nothing else, I’ll start cranking out more articles for the Michigan Review to post.



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