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Milan kundera die unerträgliche leichtigkeit des seins

Milan Kundera Die Unerträgliche Leichtigkeit Des Seins Bibliografie

Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins (Titel der Erstausgabe: L'Insoutenable Légèreté de l'être) ist ein Roman des tschechischen Autors Milan Kundera, den. Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins | Milan Kundera, Susanna Roth | ISBN: | Kostenloser Versand für alle Bücher mit Versand und Verkauf​. Auf dieser philosophischen Überzeugung baut Kundera seinen Roman um ein Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins ist das erfolgreichste Werk des sie mir alle die gleiche Angst. Jede von ihnen hat eine Grenze überschritten, der ich. Jeder kann sein Leben komponieren wie Musik! Milan Kunderas Botschaft war süßer Trost in bleiernen Zeiten. Viele Jahre später las sie "Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins" von Milan Kundera erneut - mit einem anderen Blick und anderen.

milan kundera die unerträgliche leichtigkeit des seins

Viele Jahre später las sie "Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins" von Milan Kundera erneut - mit einem anderen Blick und anderen. Liebe Besucher*innen von agloco.se, aktuell sind wir für Sie im Homeoffice erreichbar. Bitte nutzen Sie bevorzugt E-Mails, um uns zu kontaktieren. die unerträgliche leichtigkeit des seins film.

Love's trite antics. In addition, Kundera's references to philosophy and Beethoven were clearly extracted from a cracker jack box.

In conclusion, the emperor has no clothes! Kundera-following and you are the majority , free yourselves! View all 34 comments.

I have had a run of books that have bored me, or annoyed me, or just did nothing for me. This one is You know, I don't even know how to describe this one.

I pretty much hated it from the first page. I do not understand the high rating on Goodreads for this book. I can barely stand the thought of picking it up again and reading more of the words telling me things about characters that I could not possibly care less about.

We have Tomas, whom we meet standing on his balcony and vacillating between whether he should ask a woman that he's "in love with" read: met in a chance encounter and became infatuated with to move in with him.

He's saved from making any kind of fucking decision by her showing up on his doorstep literally with her bags packed and ready to move in.

Which she does. And then she clings to him literally every night - to the point that he controls her sleep patterns.

He even, charmer that he is, fucks with her partially-asleep mind and tells her that he's leaving her forever, so that she'll chase him and drag him back home.

Tereza that's the woman - I had to look up her name begins to have nightmares that he's cheating on her and forcing her to watch after finding a letter from a woman in Tomas's drawer describing that very thing.

So then, in the course of a sentence, we learn that Tomas has never stopped womanizing, then that he lied to Tereza about it, then tried to justify it, and now just tries to hide it from her, but won't stop.

And she stays. He gets her a dog, because the dog will hopefully "develop lesbian tendencies" and love Tereza, because Tomas can't cope with her and needs help.

So yes, Tereza not only stays, but marries him. So then war comes, and they relocate Maybe to make Tomas feel as though Tereza has a lover as well?

Who knows. This book is so stupid She leaves him, and I think, "About frigging time. She decided to leave now And then he realizes that he can't be without her, and goes to her, and she takes him back, and then he realizes he feels nothing for her but mild indigestion and "pressure in his stomach and the despair of having returned".

I am a character reader. I need characters that I can identify with, that I can understand, maybe like I don't know them, I don't understand them, I don't identify with them in any way I just want to stop reading about them.

And so I did. View all 42 comments. This book definitely wins the award for Most Pretentious Title Ever.

People would ask me what I was reading, and I would have to respond by reading the title in a sarcastic, Oxford-Professor-of-Literature voice to make it clear that I was aware of how obnoxiously superior I sounded.

Honestly, Kundera: stop trying so hard. When I first started reading this book, I really disliked it. Kundera wastes the first two chapters on philosophical ramblings before he finally gets around to telli This book definitely wins the award for Most Pretentious Title Ever.

Kundera wastes the first two chapters on philosophical ramblings before he finally gets around to telling the story, and even then his own voice darts in and out of the story, interjecting his own opinion into the plot.

It's like trying to watch a movie with the director's commentary playing in the background - all you can think is, "shut up and let me watch the movie in peace!

Why not. But once he decides to relax a little and actually tell a coherent story, it becomes really engrossing.

I was never crazy about Tomas and Tereza, who love each other despite the fact that Tomas is a selfish man-whore Kundera phrased it more poetically, but that's basically the truth , but I think I understood them.

View all 17 comments. The original Czech text was publ The original Czech text was published the following year. View all 6 comments.

Shelves: books-i-hope-die , fiction. The Unbearable Lightness of Being was almost unbearable to read.

There was a lot of pseudo-intellectual meandering about things that deserved a little more grit. Rather, I prefer a little more reality.

I didn't care about the characters, and I didn't feel like they cared about anything. I feel like saying I was impressed with the thoughtiness of this book, but by the time I typed it I'd be so buried under multiple levels of irony that I'd suddenly be accidentally sincere again.

What was I saying? Oh, yeah. I'd probably like this book a lot more if I was having more sex.

View all 8 comments. Shelves: favorites , foriegn-lit , translated , r-r-rs. The Unbelievable Lightness of The Novel I had started reading this in and had gotten along quite a bit before I stopped reading the book for some reason and then it was forgotten.

Recently, I saw the book in a bookstore and realized that I hadn't finished it. I picked it up and started it all over again since I was not entirely sure where I had left off last time.

I was sure however that I had not read more than, say, 30 pages or so. I definitely could not remember reading it for a long The Unbelievable Lightness of The Novel I had started reading this in and had gotten along quite a bit before I stopped reading the book for some reason and then it was forgotten.

I definitely could not remember reading it for a long period of time. I only remembered starting it and bits and pieces about infidelities and the russian occupation of the Czech.

And so, I started reading it, sure that soon a page will come from where the story will be fresh and unread.

I was soon into the fiftieth page and was amazed that as I read each page, I could distinctly remember every scene, every philosophical argument, even the exact quotes and the sequence of events that was to come immediately after the scene I was reading- But I could never remember, try as I might, what was coming two pages further into the novel.

I must, at the risk of appearing boastful, say that the reason this bothered so much was that I always used to take pride in being able to remember the books that I read almost verbatim and this experience of reading a book that I had read before with this sense of knowing and forgetting at the same time, the two sensations running circles around each other and teasing me was completely disorienting.

I felt like I was on some surreal world where all that is to come was already known to me but was still being revealed one step out of tune with my time.

In any case, this continued, to my bewilderment well into the two hundredth page. Even now, I could not shake the constant expectation that the story was going to go into unread new territories just 2 or 3 pages ahead of where I was.

Every line I read I could remember having read before and in spite of making this mistake through so many pages, I still could not but tell myself that this time, surely, I have reached the part where I must have last closed the book three years ago.

Thus I have now reached the last few pages of the book and am still trying to come to terms with what it was about this novel that made me forget it, even though I identified with the views of the author and was never bored with the plot.

Was this an intentional effect or just an aberration? Will I have the same feeling if I picked up the book again a few years from today?

I also feel a slight anger towards the author for playing this trick on me, for leading me on into reading the entire book again, without giving me anything new which I had not received from the book on my first reading.

Usually when I decide to read a book again, I do it with the knowledge that I will gain something new with this reading, but Kundera gave me none of that.

What I do appreciate about this reading experience is this: as is stated in the novel, anything that happens only once might as well have not happened at all - does it then apply that any novel that can be read only once, might as well have not been read at all?

So Beethoven turned a frivolous inspiration into a serious quartet, a joke into metaphysical truth. Yet oddly enough, the transformation fails to surprise us.

We would have been shocked, on the other hand, if Beethoven had transformed the seriousness of his quartet into the trifling joke.

First as an unfinished sketch would have come the great metaphysical truth and last as a finished masterpiece —the most frivolous of jokes!

I would like to think that Kundera achieved this reverse proposition with this novel and that explains how I felt about it.

And, yes I finished reading the second last line of the book with the full awareness of what the last line of the novel was going to be.

View all 44 comments. Broadly speaking the power source motoring this novel is the battle between arguably the two most fundamental and often conflictual drives in the human psyche - the desire for commitment and the desire for freedom.

Commitment Kundera classes as heaviness; freedom as lightness. We say that something has become a great burden to us. We either bear the burden or fail and go down with it, we Broadly speaking the power source motoring this novel is the battle between arguably the two most fundamental and often conflictual drives in the human psyche - the desire for commitment and the desire for freedom.

We either bear the burden or fail and go down with it, we struggle with it, win or lose. Sabina had left a man because she felt like leaving him.

Had he persecuted her? Had he tried to take revenge on her? Her drama was a drama not of heaviness but of lightness.

What fell to her lot was not the burden but the unbearable lightness of being. Until that time, her betrayals had filled her with excitement and joy, because they opened up new paths to new adventures of betrayal.

But what if the paths came to an end? One could betray one's parents, husband, country, love, but when parents, husband, country, and love were gone - what was left to betray?

Sabina felt emptiness all around her. What if that emptiness was the goal of all her betrayals? Naturally she had not realized it until now.

How could she have? The goals we pursue are always veiled. A girl who longs for marriage longs for something she knows nothing about.

The boy who hankers after fame has no idea what fame is. The thing that gives our every move its meaning is always totally unknown to us.

Sabina was unaware of the goal that lay behind her longing to betray. The unbearable lightness of being - was that the goal?

Empathy is often created through kitsch. American cinema knows and exploits this. The tearful reunion at the end of the film makes us feel good about the human race.

Leafing through a book on Hitler, I was touched by some of his portraits: they reminded me of my childhood. I grew up during the war; several members of my family perished in Hitler's concentration camps; but what were their deaths compared with the memories of a lost period in my life, a period that would never return?

He's showing us what he privately feels is at odds with the prescribed feeling. And we understand there's often an element of kitsch in the proscribed collective feeling.

Because we're pretending we favour the interests of the collective over the personal. Having a public, keeping a public in mind, means living in lies.

As soon as kitsch is recognized for the lie it is, it moves into the context of non-kitsch, thus losing its authoritarian power and becoming as touching as any other human weakness.

For none among us is superman enough to escape kitsch completely. No matter how we scorn it, kitsch is an integral part of the human condition.

The Nazis took kitsch to a whole new level. It would be comical to watch now if we didn't know what it led to.

A whole nation bamboozled into idiocy by kitsch. Taking pride in something as random and unearned as nationality is little but hollow posturing when you think about it.

Nationality is not something you have achieved after all. It's simply the result of a thrown dice. And the same nationality can evoke an inexhaustible number of different images in any given individual.

It's essentially a bogus idea of unity. Totalitarian regimes include nations which historically denied women equal rights, countries which enforced racial segregation and persecuted homosexuality.

They, too, need certainties and simple truths to make the multitudes understand, to provoke collective tears.

And when we see films now about these struggles kitsch is always present. They enable us to feel we are part of the jubilant throng marching through the centuries Everything is perhaps ultimately turned into kitsch.

This probably isn't quite Kundera's best novel but it's a fabulous and inspiring read for all its wisdom and the playful possibilities of fiction it embraces and dramatizes.

But isn't it true that an author can write only about himself? Staring impotently across a courtyard, at a loss for what to do; hearing the pertinacious rumbling of one's own stomach during a moment of love; betraying, yet lacking the will to abandon the glamorous path of betrayal; raising one's fist with the crowds in the Grand March; displaying one's wit before hidden microphones-I have known all these situations, I have experienced them myself, yet none of them has given rise to the person my curriculum vitae and I represent.

The characters in my novels are my own unrealized possibilities. That is why I am equally fond of them all and equally horrified by them.

Each one has crossed a border that I myself have circumvented. It is that crossed border the border beyond which my own "I" ends which attracts me most.

For beyond that border begins the secret the novel asks about. The novel is not the author's confession; it is an investigation of human life in the trap the world has become.

View all 13 comments. Despite that, it took me a while to finally read it. I guess I was a bit afraid that the philosophy dense prose will be too much for me without background in this subject.

They make life altering decisions and then they feel chocked by them. However, when considering the option to go the other way and free themselves there is the fear that the road could lead to their peril.

Having the ability to make choices gives one power but can also be overwhelming. The author is saying that, since we live only one life, our decisions are difficult to make as there is no comparison.

However, as we live only one life our decisions do not matter much in the big picture as reputation increase the importance.

As Tomas puts it, Einmal is keinmal. There were some parts I did not enjoy as much about the book. I was a bit furious with the misogyny of Kundera and wanted to shake Teresa to come back to her senses.

She said she wanted more from her life and then she ends up accepting a cheating husband although it made her miserable. View 2 comments.

I spent part of my lazy weekend reading this book on the grassy hills of The Huntington Library surrounded by gardens, art, and beauty.

Even the serene surroundings and my sensational reading date could not make up for this book. Weak characters, horrible assumptions, pseudo philosophy, and no clear grasp of how women are actually motivated.

Only wannabe Lotharios who pride themselves as philosophers would enjoy this. I tried. I really did.

View all 47 comments. Three hikers are out on a walk, and it starts to rain. Within minutes, they realize that they've been caught in a powerful storm, and they quickly find shelter under a rock overhang.

As they are pressed back against the side of the sharp rock, they unknowingly perceive the storm in three very different ways.

Hiker 1 finds the unpredictability of the storm wild, wonderful and erotic. She knows that you can not control nature, nor would she be foolish enough to think that she could understand wha Three hikers are out on a walk, and it starts to rain.

She knows that you can not control nature, nor would she be foolish enough to think that she could understand what was happening, what it means, or when it will end.

She loves the feel of the rain on her face and the wind in her hair. Hiker 2 is terrified by the storm. She is crouched down, eyes closed, hands over her ears, and she is convinced that they are going to die.

She winces as each bolt of lightning strikes down before them and her heart is racing in discomfort and confusion.

She wishes it would all go away. Hiker 3 is a busy guy, a man who had to be convinced to join the hike in the first place. He realizes that this storm will delay them by at least a good half hour, and, in his disgust, he refuses to speak to or acknowledge the fear or excitement of his fellow hikers.

He feels angry that his time is being wasted, and he's anxious over the loss of cell service. After the storm, the three hikers have three different responses to the storm: Hiker 1 goes home to write a poem and prepare a hearty meal.

Hiker 2 vows to give up caffeine and swears she'll never hike again. Hiker 3 posts a nasty tweet disparaging Mother Nature from his car, as soon as his cell service is restored.

Coincidentally, all three hikers were reading The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera, at the time of the storm, but the topic never came up on their walk.

They will finish the book at three different times and go on to have three completely different reactions to the writing.

Ironically, they will respond similarly to how they responded to the storm. View all 30 comments. Julie Ha! Thanks, Kevin!!

Gotta keep shaking it up, right?? Nov 18, PM. Shankar Great. Have their responses to the storm come out alike?

Jun 28, PM. Seems odd that I'd read Kundera seven times previously and one of those seven books was not The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

But for whatever reason that's the way it went down. All I can say is that it was worth the wait. I simply loved Immortality, Laughable Loves too, and this was every bit as good.

If anything, I found it even better. Before I even started reading I pondered over this cover. I knew as little as possible about the novel previously.

Other than Prague, sex, and a dog featured Seems odd that I'd read Kundera seven times previously and one of those seven books was not The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

Other than Prague, sex, and a dog featured. Was it a man who liked wearing women's underwear? Or a woman who had a thing for Bowler hats? Or a hat, a bra, and a pair of panties from three different people?

Now all becomes clear! And I can't stop thinking about Sabina's orgasmic shout! Kundera's Philosophical musings blended together with lots of romping didn't surprise me one bit.

What did though was how everything came together to make a novel with characters I truly cared for. Don't think I've come across such a warm bonding with Kundera's men and women previously.

Oh, and of course there's Karenin too, who could forget, and I'm normally a cat lover. How I would have loved to play catch with him, take him for walks, let him sleep at the end of my bed, lick me in the face to wake me up in the morning.

Now I want a dog! Back to the humans - Tomas is one of four main characters born frankly of images in Kundera's mind. All of them to one extent or another enact the paradox of choices that are not choices, of courses of action that are indistinguishable in consequence from their opposite.

He shows us Sabina, a painter, as she is deciding whether or not to keep her current lover, Franz, a university professor.

Franz is physically strong. If he used his strength on her and ordered her about, Sabina knows she wouldn't put up with him for more than five minutes.

But he is gentle, like a pacified bear, and because she believes physical love must be violent she finds Franz rather dull.

Either way, whatever Franz does, she will have to leave him and move on. Sabina lives by betrayal by abandoning family, her lovers, and, in the end, her country, in a way that condemns her to what Kundera calls a lightness of being, by which he means an existence so lacking in commitment, fidelity, or moral responsibility to anyone else as to be unattached to the real world.

By contrast, his fourth character, Tereza, the loyal wife of Tomas, suffers an unflagging love for her philandering husband that finally is responsible for his ruin in the medical profession, because it's her unwillingness to live in exile that brings him back to his fate in Czechoslovakia after he has set himself up nicely in a Swiss hospital.

Thus, Tereza, the exact opposite of Sabina in commitment and rootedness, descends under an unbearable moral burden, weight and lightness, in the Kunderian physics, which adds up to the same thing.

I could try and pick bits and pieces of the novel that stood out for me. Only I can't. Because I loved everything about it, all equally. Without a single moment when I thought 'Umm, does that really need to be in there' This for me is Kundera in truly formidable form.

And it's no surprise the book was, is, and will continue to be, so popular with readers. And let's face it, would it have been so popular if it wasn't for the sex?

I doubt it. But it's so much more than that, and if it isn't one of the best things I end up reading this year, then I've gone completely round the bend!

Thank you Mr Kundera, You're an absolute genius! View all 31 comments. Sometimes, this is our only response when the heart decides to take the upper hand against our firm will not so firm then, is it?

It had the same significance for her as an elegant cane for the dandy a century ago. It differentiated her from others. A masterpiece of lost souls wandering in the Golden City.

An elegy of obsession and madness. Love begins with a metaphor. Which is to say, love begins at the point when a woman enters her first word into our poetic memory.

It's rare that I come across a title and intuitively tag it as an oxymoron; rarer still, I continue to silently contemplate the space lying between the duo.

Unbearable Lightness. How is lightness, unbearable? But the oxymoron is further granted a neighbor — Being.

And that muddles up the equation for good. What is Being? A floating mass of dissimilar silos, each absorbing and dispersing in surprisingly equal measure to stay afloat?

Or a concrete str It's rare that I come across a title and intuitively tag it as an oxymoron; rarer still, I continue to silently contemplate the space lying between the duo.

Or a concrete structure of unified sketch without an exit, so everything entering its surface always lay within, if only in pale remnants?

Just the image of standing immobilized over the bridge, with the reflections of lightness and heaviness banks running through our eyes like a movie, can bear a print of many, many people, the protagonists of this novel included.

A whole lifetime of four intellectuals in the unstable Prague of s was spent in deciding the bank to advance to, although each assumed they had a bank in eye, propped by their distinctive weapons.

The doctor in Tomas and the artist in Tereza embraced heaviness of Being in their continued fidelity to each other with the ironic support of his sexual outings and her unvacillating desolation.

The artist in Sabina Tomas' mistress and the academic in Franz Sabina's partner responded to lightness of Being in their effortless freeing of each other's emotions in the favour of the adrenaline rush that uncertainty brings.

On the surface, an intelligible lie; underneath, the unintelligible truth. Everything that cannot be fathomed or fought, is labelled 'es muss sein' it must be.

A whole doctrine can be poured over as guidelines to wade this stream, caressing the surface with strokes of honesty, love, fidelity and optimism and pushing lie, betrayal and cowardice violently behind.

But it is way easy to mark the 'surface' and 'underneath' in a painting; nigh impossible in life. Who knows what thunderous flash might turn either bank unattractive?

Everyone who enters this cryptic stream is not looking to reach a bank; some simply grapple in the water, content by the thuds of moving waves of misgivings and contemplation that impart a certain momentum to their otherwise still lives.

But the icing on the cake is the concept of 'kitsch'! View all 63 comments. For he thereby deprives his life of a dimension of beauty.

We can ignore them or scoff at them, demean them by calling them coincidences, or we can choose to believe there is a bit of magic gently bumping us in directions that will hopefully lead us to greater happiness.

One could be paranoid and think that, when we ignore the magic, maybe that is when we lead ourselves to tragedy.

This event has to happen for this series of events to happen to encourage me to make this decision. But what if I do prove that everything is just a series of random coincidences influenced by my haphazard decision making ability and that there is no magic?

Stark truth is rarely a good trade off for a belief in the possibility of magical moments. So what brings Tomas and Tereza together?

A shared interest in Beethoven? The number six? Anna Karenina? An ordered cognac? When she shows up on his doorstep in Prague, Tomas is surprised, but not too surprised.

He has this effect on women that makes them want to do whatever he wants. He accepts this as just part of the natural order of his life.

What does surprise him is that he allows Tereza to spend the night and then more nights and more. Love does not make itself felt in the desire for copulation a desire that extends to an infinite number of women but in the desire for shared sleep a desire limited to one woman.

They are very much alike. Men flock to her in the same way that women flock to him. Sabina is actually my favorite character in the novel and made forever famous by her portrayal by Lena Olin in the movie.

Kundera defines her character best through her relationship with the married and besotted Franz. The more committed he becomes the more anxious she becomes.

Her lightness of being is threatened. Even though Tomas is philosophically opposed to marriage, he surprises himself when he asks Tereza to marry him.

The whiteboard diagram for this odd occurrence would be circles upon circles. Tomas has a lightness of being that is admirable and could make the most level-headed person covetous of his easy, charming manner.

If truth be known, many people would like to have a life with a stable spouse, but still be able to have affairs. Those who resist the urge do so out of fear of losing the stability of their lives.

Tereza does know about his affairs. His dalliances are trapped in the follicles of his hair. He regrets the pain he causes her, but cannot resist the siren songs of other women.

He was not obsessed with women; he was obsessed with what in each of them is unimaginable, obsessed, in other words, with the one-millionth part that makes a woman dissimilar to others of her sex.

The novel is set against the Prague Spring in , and as Tereza makes trouble with her politically incendiary pictures, Tomas writes an article comparing communism to the Oedipus story.

The Soviets are not amused, so instead of plying his talents as a brilliant brain surgeon, the Soviets decide he is more useful as a window washer.

There are particularly poignant scenes with the dog that have proved to be among the most memorable for me from the book and movie.

The reason I score the book a 4 instead of a 5 is because Milan Kundera gets sidetracked with sharing his philosophical beliefs.

I found myself mildly annoyed by these diversions because I wanted to get back to the saga of Tereza, Tomas, Franz, and Sabina. After rereading the book, I decided that I needed to rewatch the movie as well.

The movie weighs in at minutes, which is a lot of film for a rather short novel. I love the casting for the movie, with the incredibly talented Daniel Day-Lewis, Juliette Binoche, and Lena Olin, who were all so young in and just beginning their fabulous careers.

I believe that reading a book and then watching the movie enhances my experience. Will your decision be serendipitous or will it be based in a framework of logic?

If my reviews are an influence dare I say magical influence :- on your book life and I am asked my opinion between the book or the movie, I would give you a gentle push to the movie.

I wash my hands of the ripples that ensue. View all 16 comments. The paradox he is most fond of is the essential identity of opposites and he is never hesitant to express it time and again At times I felt kundera was desperate to done his philosophical musings in robes of an erotic story, he failed at both grounds miserably.

He writes beautifully, quite redolent even, he has that scholarly tone in his prose we so savor in writings, recall the sumptuousness of Marry Shelly in her Frankenstein but just can't be taken seriously as a work of philosophical or psychological depth.

View all 25 comments. Shelves: bad-books. I felt this book was contrived and to me it seemed as if the author tried desperately to sound intellectual.

Instead he came off egotistical. First off all the meandering about Nietzche and quite frankly he set me off to start off by making statements I couldn't agree but he goes right on as if it is a trueism that everyone must believe in.

To be quite frank the characters were boring. The prose was uninteresting. There was no emotion, no real depth, and how many times to I have to hear about hi I felt this book was contrived and to me it seemed as if the author tried desperately to sound intellectual.

There was no emotion, no real depth, and how many times to I have to hear about him pluking the woman from the reed basket - please!

Another reviewer mentioned slogging thorugh life and this book - I couldn't agree more - it was a chore and that's not what we read for.

I finally "gave up the ghost" so maybe I shouldn't review it since I've not read it all the way through but bad is bad, and I can't see how this was going to turn itself around.

This author has created a facade - he talks a good story, with lots of smoke and mirrors with words that sound intellectual but there is no real depth there.

Overrated Rhetorical games, combined with recurrent references to Nietzsche and Beethoven, create an intellectual facade that seems much weightier than it really is.

Built on many false presumptions and bolstered by an epic, scholarly tone, the novel has potential to be interesting in its musings, but just can't be taken seriously as a work of philosophical or psychological depth.

I would recommend that people avoid this book - There are so much better uses of their time. Robin robin. He was unable to identify himself with so alien and unfamiliar an object as the body.

The body was a cage, and inside the cage was something which looked, listened, feared, thought, and marveled; that something, that remainder left over after the body had been accounted for, was the soul.

Today, of course, the body is no longer unfamiliar: we know that the beating in our chest is the heart and that the nose is the nozzle of a hose sticking out of the body to take oxygen to the lungs.

The face is nothing but an instrument panel registering all the body mechanisms: digestion, sight, hearing, respiration, thought.

Ever since man has learned to give each part of the body a name, the body has given him less trouble. He has also learned that the soul is nothing more than the gray matter of the brain in action.

The old duality of body and soul has become shrouded in scientific terminology, and we can laugh at it as merely an obsolete prejudice. There was a problem filtering reviews right now.

Please try again later. Verified Purchase. Best book I have ever read. See all reviews from the United Kingdom.

Top international reviews. Translate all reviews to English. Gegen Ende wird das Buch irgendwie zu politisch und schrullig. Thank you for your feedback.

Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again. Translate review to English. Ich kann es jedem nur empfehlen.

Ein wunderbares Buch, welches jedes Mal wieder zum nachdenken anregt. Im Mittelpunkt steht Teresa. Kellnerin und Fotografin. Eine freiwillig Leidende.

Teresa lernt kennen und lieben: Tomas, den Arzt aus Prag. Tomas, ein notorischer Seitenspringer, verliebt sich nicht minder in Teresa.

Sie heiraten. Bevorzugtes Objekt der Begierden Tomas'. Des kurzen Traums von Freiheit. Es war am Rande von Prag.

Die Moldau hatte die Stadt bereits durchflossen und den Glanz des Hradschin und der Kirchen hinter sich gelassen.

Eifersucht in Zeiten der Liebe. Einmarsch der Truppen des Warschauer Paktes. Russische Panzer in Prag. Flucht in die Schweiz.

Flucht aufs Land. Stationen zweier Farbtupfer im Lande Kafka. Karel Gott kommt in dem Roman nicht vor.

Gott sei Dank, ist man geneigt zu sagen. Der Schlaf als Metapher der Liebe. Obwohl: "Mit Metaphern spielt man nicht.

Die Liebe kann aus einer einzigen Metapher geboren werden. Es werden, so Milan Kundera, "Romanpersonen nicht wie lebendige Menschen aus einem Mutterleib, sondern aus einer Situation, einem Satz, einer Metapher geboren".

In diesem Sinne sind die Kopfgeburten des tschechischen Schriftstellers die interessantesten literarischen Erfindungen ihrer Zeit.

Es bleibt immer ein kleiner Prozentsatz an Unvorstellbarem. Das Buch bietet einen spannenden Einstieg in das Denken Kunderas.

Manche davon fand ich anregend, andere eher skurril. Kein Must-read. Load more international reviews. One person found this helpful.

Muss man gelesen haben. Milan Kundera besitzt die Gabe ein "philosophisches Buch" so umzusetzen, dass es trotzdem keine schwere Kost ist. Wer Kafka mag, wird dieses Buch verstehen und lieben!

Es war gut, aber es gibt Besseres. Ich war nicht so begeistert davon, wie ich gehofft hatte. Tut mir leid das zu schreiben!

Milan Kundera Die Unerträgliche Leichtigkeit Des Seins Video

DIE UNERTRÄGLICHE LEICHTIGKEIT DES SEINS Du stirbst zieht dein leben an dir before i fall und ihm ist das Leben in Prag unangenehm geworden. Die Regierungsmitglieder wurden nach Moskau gebracht. Das Leben ist einmalig. Tomas марвел sich machtlos, aber zugleich beruhigt. Kundera begleitet seine beiden Figuren ins Exil und wieder zurück und bis zum Ende ihres Lebens. Tomas kann auch in der Schweiz nicht von seinen Seitensprüngen lassen. In der Serviererin Teresa https://agloco.se/hd-filme-tv-stream/300-hd-stream.php ihm eine Frau, die er liebt. Manche verstanden das als Anregung, horrorfilme 21 der Lebenskunst zu widmen, andere als Lizenz https://agloco.se/serien-stream-free/marleen-lohse-mann.php sexuellen Freizügigkeit. Zeitgenössische Literatur intern. Auch mit seinem Liebesleben ist er zufrieden. Er informiert sie über den Tod von Teresa und Tomas. Auch dort hat Tomas Affären. Und so kann man diesen Roman unabhängig jeglicher ideologischer Färbung und jeglichen politischen Hintergrunds lesen und verstehen. Kundera begleitet seine beiden Figuren ins Exil und wieder zurück und bis mitarbeiter stasi Ende ihres Lebens. Jeder im Krankenhaus erwartet, dass Tomas seiner Karriere zuliebe den Widerruf leistet. Liebe Besucher*innen von agloco.se, aktuell sind wir für Sie im Homeoffice erreichbar. Bitte nutzen Sie bevorzugt E-Mails, um uns zu kontaktieren. Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins verschaffte Milan Kundera den internationalen Durchbruch. Der Prager Chirurg Tomas, der die Frauen begehrt und. Prag zur Zeit des Kalten Kriegs. In einem Restaurant begegnen sich der erfolgreiche Chirurg Tomas und die Serviererin Teresa. Zwischen den. die unerträgliche leichtigkeit des seins film.

Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins by Milan Kundera ,.

Susanna Roth Translator. Der Prager Chirurg Tomas, der die Frauen begehrt und zugleich fürchtet, ein Erotomane, der seine Scheidung wie eine Hochzeit feierte und fortan der Liebe aus dem Weg ging, bricht für die Kellnerin Teresa mit einigen seiner Grundsätze.

Seine erotischen Freundschaften, wie jene mit der Malerin Sabina, führt er aber weiter. Sie kehrt in ihr Heimatland zurück, er folgt ihr, verliert seine Stellung und arbeitet als Fensterputzer, später als Lastwagenfahrer in einem Dorf fern von Prag.

Das Glück endet wiederum in der Katastrophe. Get A Copy. Paperback , Fischer Taschenbuch , pages. Published April by Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag first published More Details Original Title.

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Holy Smokes! I finally found my favorite book and author TD!! Please let me know if anyone feels the same and has other like suggestions?

Glenna Lee I definitely feel this way! I wish I had read this book so much sooner. It is beautiful and so full of rich metaphors and unapologetic in their use.

A …more I definitely feel this way! And most importantly, as someone who struggles often to resolve existential angst, it is really insightful in regards to the issues which cause this.

I just saw the movie based on the book. But I haven't read the book. Should I? Helene Farber Provance If you liked the movie you may not like the book because it is totally different, i.

The movie did not reflect the book very …more If you liked the movie you may not like the book because it is totally different, i.

The movie did not reflect the book very well at all. On the other hand, you may love the book as it would clarify the mess of the movie.

It's a great philosophical novel. See all 24 questions about Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins…. Lists with This Book.

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins.

And yet, even with that being the case, I hesitated a bit. That is, until the mere mentioning it received an almost overzealously positive response from two close friends whose opinions I hold in high regard.

Damn glad. The novel deep-heartedly charts their struggles against communism, their pasts, their lovers, and themselves. Kundera observes the stuff that goes on internally amongst the characters; he intellectualizes it, and tells you about it.

This is one reason why reading is often more valuable than watching TV or a movie: when reading a good book you get direct psychological explanations, and you get to go inside the heads of characters.

Taken as a whole, I found this novel to be profound, but in unusual ways. It even felt choppy on occasion. But the chapters are short, which fits its feel, and also gives you time to think about the penetrating thoughts that Kundera puts across.

Kundera strikes me as a craftsman of sorts. He switches timelines deftly and effectively — even when I thought he was crazy to do so; when I thought he gave up the climax of the novel towards its middle, he proved me dead wrong.

This novel is not full of sweeping, pounding paragraphs of poignant, soul-hitting, philosophical depth, but rather offers up constant glimpses; nuggets of insightful observations on almost every page, that when added up together, reveal an impressive, heartfelt, and real work.

I love the way this novel portrays love. It recognizes and represents its beauty while at the same time showing how psychological and manipulatable it can be.

The loves in this novel are accurate ones, not at all cheapened by gimmicky slogans or conventional lines.

Metaphors are not to be trifled with. A single metaphor can give birth to love. Would he throw her out?

Perhaps not. Probably not. But the fragile edifice of their love would certainly come tumbling down. For that edifice rested on the single column of her fidelity, and loves are like empires: when the idea they are founded on crumbles, they, too, fade away.

Gradually, timorously, their vocabularies would have come together, like bashful lovers, and the music of one would have begun to intersect with the music of the other.

But it was too late now. The lack of importance of our decisions. The unavoidable importance of life. The unavoidable lack of importance of life.

That's how this novel feels. If I'm to give a book five stars, it needs to affect me in some profound ways -- it needs to change me, at least a little.

This novel has affected my view of life; how I see the world. I have trouble elaborating on that because beauty is such an abstract concept; you know it when you see it, or rather— you know it when you feel it.

Beauty has some melancholy; it is appreciative -- special but fleeting -- and never fully absorbed as its full whole.

Maybe that's a major aspect of beauty -- knowing it is beyond your grasp. Beyond you. Life is ultimately a crapshoot.

You don't know what's going to happen. You might as well hang on to something. And if that's what you're going to hang on to and you are , then you might as well understand its simplicity and its complexity, and its beauty -- you might as well understand and appreciate as much of it as you can.

It only makes sense that you do. This novel can help you do that. View all 67 comments. This review is sung by Freddy Mercury to the tune of Bohemian Rhapsody.

Is this a fiction? Is this just fantasy? Not just a narrative Of Czech infidelity. Thunderbolt and lightning very nearly enticing me Repetition!

Repetition Kundera— Metaphor! But I'm just a Prague boy and many women love me He's just a Prague boy from a Czech family Flair is his prose from this virtuosity Easy come easy go will you let me go Bohemia!

No we will not let you go - let him go Bohemia! We will not let you go - let him go Bohemia! We will not let you go let me go Will not let you go let me go never Never let you go let me go Never let me go ooo No, no, no, no, no, no, no Oh Milan Kundera, Milan Kundera says its so Premier Brezhnev has a gulag put aside for me For me For me [Brian May melts our faces with a blistering guitar solo while Wayne and Garth head bang in a Pacer] Soviet tanks can occupy and eat our pie Naked women can sing and leave me to die Oh Milan, Kant German sex Milan Just gotta go Swiss just gotta get right outta here Ooh yeah, ooh yeah Unbearable lightness Anyone can read Unbearable lightness unbearable lightness of being Any Soviet era Czech knows View all comments.

There is probably one novel that is the most responsible for the direction of my post-graduation European backpacking trip ten years ago which landed me in Prague for two solid weeks.

Just read it, he wrote. Whatever else you do, just read this book. It is about everything in the world. Being already a Kafka fan of some long-standing, There is probably one novel that is the most responsible for the direction of my post-graduation European backpacking trip ten years ago which landed me in Prague for two solid weeks.

Being already a Kafka fan of some long-standing, I was quite open to another absurdly minded Czech telling the story of his city and by extension the rest of the world.

Suffice to say, Kundera had me at the very first paragraph. Has any other modern novel had such a wonderfully philosophical opening than this one?

The idea of eternal return is a mysterious one, and Nietzsche has often perplexed other philosophers with it: to think that everything recurs as we once experienced it, and that the recurrence itself recurs ad infinitum!

What does this mad myth signify? Needless to say, this is a heady mix, the kind of thing to go straight to a recent college graduate with literature and philosophy on the brain.

To write, as some have, that the book is primarily about erotic encounters is as much as to say that Beethoven was a guy who played piano.

Instead it is a book about tyranny, the large and the small, the ones we endure and the ones we resist, the ones we submit to for love and the ones that always rankle silently.

The tyranny of kitsch, as understood by the novel, kitsch to mean a subjective, sentimental folding screen that hides away the sight of death.

The questions that the book seeks to explore circle around the ideas of polar opposites, truth and lies, love and hate or indifference , freedom and slavery, heaviness and lightness.

The Kundera style is a very delightful bit and piecework manner. Part of what Kundera does is move the story along through first one person, then go back in time and retell only some of that story focused on a second person and demonstrate how our best attempts at comprehending each other remains woefully inadequate.

There will always be layers fathoms below our drilling. Yet at the same time, Kundera moves the story forward, stops, switches character again and in this third instance either goes back to person number one or switches to person number three and repeats the process, and repeats again.

While the author may touch the mind and the libido, the heart often remains chilly. Though what precisely does lie behind our disagreements and disconnections from others than differing mental states?

We fall out of love with someone not because of the size of her bottom or his new haircut, but because our lives shift in differing directions and we can no longer think in the same cohesive manner with the other person.

Our ideas become different. What are our wants but our ideas given concrete form and targets? Their stories are told against the backdrop of the Russian invasion and subjugation of Czechoslovakia during the Cold War.

Kundera twines their two stories together examining how love can either lift us up to heights of ecstasy or weigh us down with its solidity and unchangeable reality — then poses the surprising question: which condition should we view as the negative in binary opposition?

Is it the uncentered lack of gravity that makes love real and powerful or does that quality make us too airy and flighty, unserious when we most need it?

Can it be both? Can it be that when couples part it is because what is lighter than a breeze for one has become a leaden drag on the other?

This is done through a sort of anecdotal dictionary that allows each character to demonstrate their grasp of an idea. The graves are covered with grass and colorful flowers.

Modest tombstones are lost in the greenery. When the sun goes down, the cemetery sparkles with tiny candles.

No matter how brutal life becomes, peace always reigns in the cemetery. When she felt low, [Sabina] would get into the car, leave Prague far behind, and walk through one or another of the country cemeteries she loved so well.

Against a backdrop of blue hills, they were as beautiful as a lullaby. For Franz a cemetery was an ugly dump of stones and bones.

At every stage, there is an elegiac note to happiness as though all these dances have been gone through before, as though all love affairs, even should Nietzsche be wrong, carry within them the seeds of their own endings.

Their tragedy is commonplace and follows a pattern as though ritualized. For each of them separately, it is a kind of death to be together and a kind of death to be apart, and together their momentary happinesses are a kind of staving off of this specter.

Kundera nicely ends The Unbearable Lightness of Being, foreshadowing what happens later after the closing scenes, which gives the novel a sadly sweet tone instead of merely tragic.

Instead of simply ending with death, as a kind of negation, the book closes with sleep, part of the circling motif, the cycle we go through, our lives one passing hoop.

After my initial reading of the novel, I found myself rereading it immediately, going through all of it again, underlining passages, committing certain ones to memory.

It is a kind of exorcism and a kind of nostalgia and it is a beautiful example of writing that matters, beyond all else, writing that matters.

View all 18 comments. Kundera is an unconventional writer, to say the least. If you are looking for fully fleshed characters or a smooth plot, The Unbearable Lightness of Being is not for you.

Kundera merely uses plot and characters as tools or examples to explain his philosophy about life, and that is what this novel is all about.

He will provide a glimpse of his characters' lives, hit the pause button and then go on to explain all about what just happened, the philosophy and psychology which drives the lives of his Kundera is an unconventional writer, to say the least.

He will provide a glimpse of his characters' lives, hit the pause button and then go on to explain all about what just happened, the philosophy and psychology which drives the lives of his characters and often real lives as well.

In keeping with this format, the novel is fragmentary in structure. It is easy to see how a reader can get annoyed at the author's getting lost in his philosophical musings so very often.

But if you can find some meaning in those, the novel just might work for you. Decisions and dilemmas. Kundera's characters seem to searching for an elusive something, trying to find that perfect place in life where they would want to live forever.

However, it is difficult to know for sure the direction in which that perfect place lies. If they find their current lives suffocating, going the other way could be liberating.

But is it worth leaving behind all that will be lost? The moment they take a step ahead, they begin feeling the pull of what they had just turned their back to.

Often the choice is not between perfection and imperfection, it is a trade-off. The ability to shape our own lives, to some extent at least, is a power.

Sometimes it can be a burden too. Specially when there is no way of knowing what waits for us at the next corner.

Do we choose being happy today at the expense of 'What ifs.. Or do we put us through an ordeal now in anticipation of it paying off in the future?

What if we end up in a mess, unable to turn back? Human time does not run in circles; it runs ahead in a straight line. That is why man cannot be happy: happiness is the longing for repetition.

Having only one life to live, makes the life choices difficult and onerous. It is also because of this very fact of living only one life that these life choices do not have much weight in the bigger picture.

And it is this irony which causes the unbearable lightness of being. The only thing that relieves us from this unbearable lightness are fortuitous occurences which, love it or hate it, have a say in making up our lives.

Guided by his sense of beauty, an individual transforms a fortuitous occurence Beethoven's music, death under a train into a motif , which then assumes a permanent place in the composition of the individual's life.

Kundera does not speak of love in a poetic, all-beautiful manner. What happens when one of the characters packs her life in a suitcase and goes off to be with her lover?

Is there music in the air, fluttering butterflies? Her stomach makes a rumbling sound the moment she sees her lover Love is often accompanied by jealousy, mistrust, lies, deceit, pain.

Yet they do find some strength in love and do all they can to hold on to it. To the end. Some of those hit the right note, while there were parts that I found trite or pretentious or simply lacking any sense.

Take this for example. One of the characters sleeps with every other woman who crosses his path. Kundera philosophizes his physical desire and explains it as a deep-seated intellectual curiosity.

Naah, I don't buy that. Then there were pretending-to-be-deep quotes that just went over my head. Umm, What?

Another thing I found odd was that the author breaks the fourth wall and tries to be defensive about the novel.

He comes in and explains how he is not just telling a story, but investigating human lives. He tells us that the characters are merely figments of his imagination so we shouldn't expect them to be realistic.

He tells us that it is wrong to chide a novel for mysterious coincidences so we shouldn't question the unrealistic events in the plot.

Agreed there are some flaws, but I would have forgiven them even without the author explaining himself away.

View all 27 comments. I have a bone to pick with Kundera and his following. People, this has got to be the most over-rated book of human history.

I mean, references to infidelity alone even infidelity that makes use of funky costumes like '50s ganster hats--the only note-and-applauseworthy aspect this book!

The male protaganist is, hands down, a one-dimensional and boring buffoon, while the female protaganist is lackluste I have a bone to pick with Kundera and his following.

The male protaganist is, hands down, a one-dimensional and boring buffoon, while the female protaganist is lackluster and underdeveloped.

This book is not but chicken soup for those obnoxious, lonely intellectuals who wish they could be playaz, and therefore admire Dr.

Love's trite antics. In addition, Kundera's references to philosophy and Beethoven were clearly extracted from a cracker jack box.

In conclusion, the emperor has no clothes! Kundera-following and you are the majority , free yourselves! View all 34 comments.

I have had a run of books that have bored me, or annoyed me, or just did nothing for me. This one is You know, I don't even know how to describe this one.

I pretty much hated it from the first page. I do not understand the high rating on Goodreads for this book. I can barely stand the thought of picking it up again and reading more of the words telling me things about characters that I could not possibly care less about.

We have Tomas, whom we meet standing on his balcony and vacillating between whether he should ask a woman that he's "in love with" read: met in a chance encounter and became infatuated with to move in with him.

He's saved from making any kind of fucking decision by her showing up on his doorstep literally with her bags packed and ready to move in.

Which she does. And then she clings to him literally every night - to the point that he controls her sleep patterns.

He even, charmer that he is, fucks with her partially-asleep mind and tells her that he's leaving her forever, so that she'll chase him and drag him back home.

Tereza that's the woman - I had to look up her name begins to have nightmares that he's cheating on her and forcing her to watch after finding a letter from a woman in Tomas's drawer describing that very thing.

So then, in the course of a sentence, we learn that Tomas has never stopped womanizing, then that he lied to Tereza about it, then tried to justify it, and now just tries to hide it from her, but won't stop.

And she stays. He gets her a dog, because the dog will hopefully "develop lesbian tendencies" and love Tereza, because Tomas can't cope with her and needs help.

So yes, Tereza not only stays, but marries him. So then war comes, and they relocate Maybe to make Tomas feel as though Tereza has a lover as well?

Who knows. This book is so stupid She leaves him, and I think, "About frigging time. She decided to leave now And then he realizes that he can't be without her, and goes to her, and she takes him back, and then he realizes he feels nothing for her but mild indigestion and "pressure in his stomach and the despair of having returned".

I am a character reader. I need characters that I can identify with, that I can understand, maybe like I don't know them, I don't understand them, I don't identify with them in any way I just want to stop reading about them.

And so I did. View all 42 comments. This book definitely wins the award for Most Pretentious Title Ever. People would ask me what I was reading, and I would have to respond by reading the title in a sarcastic, Oxford-Professor-of-Literature voice to make it clear that I was aware of how obnoxiously superior I sounded.

Honestly, Kundera: stop trying so hard. When I first started reading this book, I really disliked it. Kundera wastes the first two chapters on philosophical ramblings before he finally gets around to telli This book definitely wins the award for Most Pretentious Title Ever.

Kundera wastes the first two chapters on philosophical ramblings before he finally gets around to telling the story, and even then his own voice darts in and out of the story, interjecting his own opinion into the plot.

It's like trying to watch a movie with the director's commentary playing in the background - all you can think is, "shut up and let me watch the movie in peace!

Why not. But once he decides to relax a little and actually tell a coherent story, it becomes really engrossing.

I was never crazy about Tomas and Tereza, who love each other despite the fact that Tomas is a selfish man-whore Kundera phrased it more poetically, but that's basically the truth , but I think I understood them.

View all 17 comments. The original Czech text was publ The original Czech text was published the following year. View all 6 comments.

Shelves: books-i-hope-die , fiction. The Unbearable Lightness of Being was almost unbearable to read.

There was a lot of pseudo-intellectual meandering about things that deserved a little more grit. Rather, I prefer a little more reality.

I didn't care about the characters, and I didn't feel like they cared about anything. I feel like saying I was impressed with the thoughtiness of this book, but by the time I typed it I'd be so buried under multiple levels of irony that I'd suddenly be accidentally sincere again.

What was I saying? Oh, yeah. I'd probably like this book a lot more if I was having more sex. View all 8 comments. Shelves: favorites , foriegn-lit , translated , r-r-rs.

The Unbelievable Lightness of The Novel I had started reading this in and had gotten along quite a bit before I stopped reading the book for some reason and then it was forgotten.

Recently, I saw the book in a bookstore and realized that I hadn't finished it. I picked it up and started it all over again since I was not entirely sure where I had left off last time.

I was sure however that I had not read more than, say, 30 pages or so. I definitely could not remember reading it for a long The Unbelievable Lightness of The Novel I had started reading this in and had gotten along quite a bit before I stopped reading the book for some reason and then it was forgotten.

I definitely could not remember reading it for a long period of time. I only remembered starting it and bits and pieces about infidelities and the russian occupation of the Czech.

And so, I started reading it, sure that soon a page will come from where the story will be fresh and unread. I was soon into the fiftieth page and was amazed that as I read each page, I could distinctly remember every scene, every philosophical argument, even the exact quotes and the sequence of events that was to come immediately after the scene I was reading- But I could never remember, try as I might, what was coming two pages further into the novel.

I must, at the risk of appearing boastful, say that the reason this bothered so much was that I always used to take pride in being able to remember the books that I read almost verbatim and this experience of reading a book that I had read before with this sense of knowing and forgetting at the same time, the two sensations running circles around each other and teasing me was completely disorienting.

I felt like I was on some surreal world where all that is to come was already known to me but was still being revealed one step out of tune with my time.

In any case, this continued, to my bewilderment well into the two hundredth page. Even now, I could not shake the constant expectation that the story was going to go into unread new territories just 2 or 3 pages ahead of where I was.

Every line I read I could remember having read before and in spite of making this mistake through so many pages, I still could not but tell myself that this time, surely, I have reached the part where I must have last closed the book three years ago.

Thus I have now reached the last few pages of the book and am still trying to come to terms with what it was about this novel that made me forget it, even though I identified with the views of the author and was never bored with the plot.

Was this an intentional effect or just an aberration? Will I have the same feeling if I picked up the book again a few years from today?

I also feel a slight anger towards the author for playing this trick on me, for leading me on into reading the entire book again, without giving me anything new which I had not received from the book on my first reading.

Usually when I decide to read a book again, I do it with the knowledge that I will gain something new with this reading, but Kundera gave me none of that.

What I do appreciate about this reading experience is this: as is stated in the novel, anything that happens only once might as well have not happened at all - does it then apply that any novel that can be read only once, might as well have not been read at all?

So Beethoven turned a frivolous inspiration into a serious quartet, a joke into metaphysical truth. Yet oddly enough, the transformation fails to surprise us.

We would have been shocked, on the other hand, if Beethoven had transformed the seriousness of his quartet into the trifling joke.

First as an unfinished sketch would have come the great metaphysical truth and last as a finished masterpiece —the most frivolous of jokes!

I would like to think that Kundera achieved this reverse proposition with this novel and that explains how I felt about it.

And, yes I finished reading the second last line of the book with the full awareness of what the last line of the novel was going to be.

View all 44 comments. Broadly speaking the power source motoring this novel is the battle between arguably the two most fundamental and often conflictual drives in the human psyche - the desire for commitment and the desire for freedom.

Commitment Kundera classes as heaviness; freedom as lightness. We say that something has become a great burden to us.

We either bear the burden or fail and go down with it, we Broadly speaking the power source motoring this novel is the battle between arguably the two most fundamental and often conflictual drives in the human psyche - the desire for commitment and the desire for freedom.

We either bear the burden or fail and go down with it, we struggle with it, win or lose. Sabina had left a man because she felt like leaving him.

Had he persecuted her? Had he tried to take revenge on her? Her drama was a drama not of heaviness but of lightness. What fell to her lot was not the burden but the unbearable lightness of being.

Until that time, her betrayals had filled her with excitement and joy, because they opened up new paths to new adventures of betrayal. But what if the paths came to an end?

One could betray one's parents, husband, country, love, but when parents, husband, country, and love were gone - what was left to betray?

Sabina felt emptiness all around her. What if that emptiness was the goal of all her betrayals? Naturally she had not realized it until now.

How could she have? The goals we pursue are always veiled. A girl who longs for marriage longs for something she knows nothing about.

The boy who hankers after fame has no idea what fame is. The thing that gives our every move its meaning is always totally unknown to us.

Sabina was unaware of the goal that lay behind her longing to betray. The unbearable lightness of being - was that the goal?

Empathy is often created through kitsch. American cinema knows and exploits this. The tearful reunion at the end of the film makes us feel good about the human race.

Leafing through a book on Hitler, I was touched by some of his portraits: they reminded me of my childhood. I grew up during the war; several members of my family perished in Hitler's concentration camps; but what were their deaths compared with the memories of a lost period in my life, a period that would never return?

He's showing us what he privately feels is at odds with the prescribed feeling. And we understand there's often an element of kitsch in the proscribed collective feeling.

Because we're pretending we favour the interests of the collective over the personal. Having a public, keeping a public in mind, means living in lies.

As soon as kitsch is recognized for the lie it is, it moves into the context of non-kitsch, thus losing its authoritarian power and becoming as touching as any other human weakness.

For none among us is superman enough to escape kitsch completely. No matter how we scorn it, kitsch is an integral part of the human condition.

The Nazis took kitsch to a whole new level. It would be comical to watch now if we didn't know what it led to. A whole nation bamboozled into idiocy by kitsch.

Taking pride in something as random and unearned as nationality is little but hollow posturing when you think about it.

Nationality is not something you have achieved after all. It's simply the result of a thrown dice.

And the same nationality can evoke an inexhaustible number of different images in any given individual. It's essentially a bogus idea of unity.

Totalitarian regimes include nations which historically denied women equal rights, countries which enforced racial segregation and persecuted homosexuality.

They, too, need certainties and simple truths to make the multitudes understand, to provoke collective tears. And when we see films now about these struggles kitsch is always present.

They enable us to feel we are part of the jubilant throng marching through the centuries Everything is perhaps ultimately turned into kitsch.

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