The drama of ideas in which students got caught up owed its momentum to the peculiar, and in some respects paradoxical, gifts of the teacher. Although politics is inevitably about power — who has it and for what — he seemed happy to give away whatever power lay in his position as lecturer (he frequently offered the lectern to anyone who would propose a counter-position) and to rely only on the power of the better argument. Though bound, as a Dominican friar, to the disciplines of a religious order, he seemed to have the freest, most unfettered mind in the university. He delighted in argument and was fearless in provoking it, goading and teasing his listeners — usually in direct proportion to their complacency and cock-sureness. Still, the sharpness of his dialectical rapier never took away from his gentleness; he had no need to hurt. And while irony pervaded a great deal of what he said, he never seemed cynical. To the contrary, his thinking was generous, not only in the sympathy it brought to his chosen authors but also in the imaginative vistas it opened up; the sting most often lay in the dawning sense of how much less we are than what we might be.