And Lightness In Milan Kundera's Unbearable Lightness Of Being

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In Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera uses the contrasting ideas of lightness and weight to signify ones existence. Kundera disagrees with Frederich Nietzsche’s concept of Eternal Return, and believes that instead of one’s existence being a recurring event with little to no change in detail our lives only happen once, meaning every action or decision in a life has a very brief existence.
The novel introduces us with Tomas, who is an extremely ‘light’ character, with few emotional ties to people, with a enormous need for many lovers. For him, love and sex are separate entities. He loves Tereza, a single woman, but will sleep with a large amount of other women throughout his life. The arrival of Tereza then directly signifies a new addition of weight into Tomas’ life. She is described as “The two of them got into his car, which was parked in front of the house, and drove to the station. There he claimed the suitcase (it was large and enormously heavy) and took it and her home.” (Kundera, Milan, and Michael Heim Henry. The Unbearable Lightness of Being. page 9-10) Tereza has packed up what we consider is a large amount of her belongings, moving her life into Tomas’, in a large and enormous and heavy suitcase. This suitcase contains her life, and the act of Tomas taking it home shows the entrance of Tereza’s heaviness into his life. Tereza and Tomas share a
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Their relationship does not consist of love; an emotion instead shared within other heavier relationships, and instead could be considered as being one categorized as an ‘affair’. This relationship between two ‘light’ characters seems to run into little conflict, as Tomas and Sabina share the same ideas about life. Despite what seems like an easy balance, they both move on to pursue ‘heavier’
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