From The Magic Mountain
"Sarcastic? You mean malicious. Yes, I am a little malicious," Settembrini said. "My great worry is that I have been condemned to waste my malice on such miserable objects. I hope that you have nothing against malice, my good engineer. In my eyes it is the brightest sword that reason has against the powers of darkness and ugliness. Malice, sir, is the spirit of criticism, and criticism marks the origin of progress and enlightenment." And all of a sudden he began to speak about Petrarch, whom he called the "Father of Modernity."
Tomas Mann’s Autobiography at Nobelprize.org