From a conversation between two of the characters in Immortality:
- The Argument: "...respect for tragedy is a lot more dangerous than the thoughtlessness of childish prattle. Do you realize what is the eternal precondition of tragedy? The existence of ideals that are considered more valuable than human life. And what is the precondition of wars? The same thing. They drive you to your death because presumably there is something greater than your life. War can only exist in a world of tragedy; from the beginning of history, man has only known a tragic world and has not been capable of stepping out of it. The age of tragedy can only be ended by a revolt of frivolity."
- The Rebuttal: "If high culture is coming to an end, it is also the end of you and your paradoxical ideas, because paradox as such belongs to high culture, and not to childish prattle. You remind me of the young men who supported the the Nazis or communists not out of cowardice, but out of an excess of intelligence. For nothing requires a greater effort of thought than arguments to justify the rule of nonthought. I experienced it with my own eyes and ears after the war, when intellectuals and artists rushed like a herd of cattle into the Communist Party, which soon proceeded to liquidate them systematically and with great pleasure. You are doing the same. You are the brilliant ally of your own gravediggers."