The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

by

Milan Kundera

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Tomas Character Analysis

Tereza’s husband, Sabina’s lover, and Simon’s father. Tomas is a successful neurosurgeon and serial womanizer when he first meets Tereza. Most notably, he has a long-term affair with Sabina. Tereza later comes to Prague, ready to give her life to him, and Tomas thinks that she is like a helpless infant who has been floated downriver to him in a basket. To Tomas, sex is all about violence and power, and he has the upper hand in all his sexual relationships. Tomas, however, has zero power when the Russians occupy Czechoslovakia after the Prague Spring. He is offered a job abroad, and he manages to convince Tereza to move to Zurich, but she soon grows tired of Tomas’s philandering and returns to Prague. Tomas is miserable without her and is powerless to stay away. He quits his job, quoting one of Beethoven’s quartets, saying: “Es muss sein!” Tomas’s love for Tereza is out of his control, thus “It must be!” that he returns to Czechoslovakia despite its oppressive Communist regime. Back in Prague, Tomas begins to resent Tereza, and he quickly slips back into his womanizing—another manifestation of “Es muss sein!” and something he can’t seem to control. While Tomas still has power over Tereza, his control over his own life is slipping. He can’t manage to have sex with other women without first drinking alcohol, and he writes an article for an intellectual newspaper that ruins his professional life. The article is considered anti-communist by the regime, and when he refuses to issue a retraction, Tomas is summarily dismissed from his job. He works as a country doctor for a while, but he soon quits and becomes a window washer, as he believes the regime won’t care about him if he holds a menial job. Tereza and Tomas move to the country, where Tomas grows old and is completely stripped of his power before he dies in a car crash with Tereza. Tomas serves to illustrate Kundera’s argument that true equality—in sex and in politics—is impossible; there will always be one who has power over another.

Tomas Quotes in The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The The Unbearable Lightness of Being quotes below are all either spoken by Tomas or refer to Tomas. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Time, Happiness, and Eternal Return Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Harper Perennial edition of The Unbearable Lightness of Being published in 2009.
Part 1, Chapter 2 Quotes

The heaviest of burdens crushes us, we sink beneath it, it pins us to the ground. But in the love poetry of every age, the woman longs to be weighed down by the man’s body. The heaviest of burdens is therefore simultaneously an image of life’s most intense fulfillment. The heavier the burden, the closer our lives come to the earth, the more real and truthful they become.

Conversely, the absolute absence of a burden causes man to be lighter than air, to soar into the heights, take leave of the earth and his earthly being, and become only half real, his movements as free as they are insignificant.

Related Characters: Tomas, Sabina
Page Number: 5
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 1, Chapter 3 Quotes

There is no means of testing which decision is better, because there is no basis for comparison. We live everything as it comes, without warning, like an actor going on cold. And what can life be worth if the first rehearsal for life is life itself? That is why life is always like a sketch. No, “sketch” is not quite the word, because a sketch is an outline of something, the groundwork for a picture, whereas the sketch that is our life is a sketch for nothing, an outline with no picture.

Einmal ist keinmal, says Tomas to himself. What happens but once, says the German adage, might as well not have happened at all. If we have only one life to live, we might as well not have lived at all.

Related Characters: Tomas (speaker)
Page Number: 8
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 1, Chapter 6 Quotes

Tomas came to this conclusion: Making love with a woman and sleeping with a woman are two separate passions, not merely different but opposite. 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).

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza
Page Number: 15
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 2, Chapter 8 Quotes

Something else raised him above the others as well: he had an open book on his table. No one had ever opened a book in that restaurant before. In Tereza’s eyes, books were the emblems of a secret brotherhood. For she had but a single weapon against the world of crudity surrounding her: the books she took out of the municipal library, and above all, the novels. She had read any number of them, from Fielding to Thomas Mann. They not only offered the possibility of an imaginary escape from a life she found unsatisfying; they also had a meaning for her as physical objects: she loved to walk down the street with a book under her arm. It had the same significance for her as an elegant cane for the dandy a century ago. It differentiated her from others.

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza
Related Symbols: Books
Page Number: 47-8
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 2, Chapter 11 Quotes

Early in the novel that Tereza clutched under her arm when she went to visit Tomas, Anna meets Vronsky in curious circumstances: they are at the railway station when someone is run over by a train. At the end of the novel, Anna throws herself under a train. This symmetrical composition—the same motif appears at the beginning and at the end—may seem quite “novelistic” to you, and I am willing to agree, but only on condition that you refrain from reading such notions as “fictive,” “fabricated,” and “untrue to life” into the word “novelistic.” Because human lives are composed in precisely such a fashion.

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza
Related Symbols: Books
Page Number: 52
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 2, Chapter 15 Quotes

Let me return to this dream. Its horror did not begin with Tomas’s first pistol shot; it was horrifying from the outset. Marching naked in formation with a group of naked women was for Tereza the quintessential image of horror. When she lived at home, her mother forbade her to lock the bathroom door. What she meant by her injunction was: Your body is just like all other bodies; you have no right to shame; you have no reason to hide something that exists in millions of identical copies. In her mother’s world all bodies were the same and marched behind one another in formation. Since childhood, Tereza had seen nudity as a sign of concentration camp uniformity, a sign of humiliation.

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza, Tereza’s Mother
Page Number: 57
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 2, Chapter 20 Quotes

“Here is a painting I happened to drip red paint on. At first I was terribly upset, but then I started enjoying it. The trickle looked like a crack; it turned the building site into a battered old backdrop, a backdrop with a building site painted on it. I began playing with the crack, filling it out, wondering what might be visible behind it. And that’s how I began my first cycle of paintings. I called it “Behind the Scenes.” Of course, I couldn’t show them to anybody. I’d have been kicked out of the Academy. On the surface, there was always an impeccably realistic world, but underneath, behind the backdrop’s cracked canvas, lurked something different, something mysterious or abstract.”

Related Characters: Sabina (speaker), Tomas, Tereza
Page Number: 63
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3, Chapter 2 Quotes

The bowler hat was a motif in the musical composition that was Sabina's life. It returned again and again, each time with a different meaning, and all the meanings flowed through the bowler hat like water through a riverbed. I might call it Heraclitus’ (“You can’t step twice into the same river”) riverbed; the bowler hat was a bed through which each time Sabina saw another river flow, another semantic river: each time the same object would give rise to a new meaning, though all former meanings would resonate (like an echo, like a parade of echoes) together with the new one. Each new experience would resound, each time enriching the harmony. The reason why Tomas and Sabina were touched by the sight of the bowler hat in a Zurich hotel and made love almost in tears was that its black presence was not merely a reminder of their love games but also a memento of Sabina’s father and of her grandfather, who lived in a century without airplanes and cars.

Related Characters: Tomas, Sabina, Franz
Page Number: 88
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 5, Chapter 21 Quotes

The pain grew more intense. He could not speak. It occurred to him that his womanizing was also something of an “Es muss sein!”—an imperative enslaving him. He longed for a holiday. But for an absolute holiday, a rest from all imperatives, from all “Es muss sein!" If he could take a rest (a permanent rest) from the hospital operating table, then why not from the world operating table, the one where his imaginary scalpel opened the strongbox women use to hide their illusory one-millionth part dissimilarity?

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza
Page Number: 234
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 5, Chapter 22 Quotes

He thought: In the clockwork of the head, two cogwheels turn opposite each other. On the one, images; on the other, the body’s reactions. The cog carrying the image of a naked woman meshes with the corresponding erection-command cog. But when, for one reason or another, the wheels go out of phase and the excitement cog meshes with a cog bearing the image of a swallow in flight, the penis rises at the sight of a swallow.

Moreover, a study by one of Tomas’s colleagues, a specialist in human sleep, claimed that during any kind of dream men have erections, which means that the link between erections and naked women is only one of a thousand ways the Creator can set the clockwork moving in a man’s head.

And what has love in common with all this? Nothing. If a cogwheel in Tomas’s head goes out of phase and he is excited by seeing a swallow, it has absolutely no effect on his love for Tereza.

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza
Page Number: 236
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 6, Chapter 29 Quotes

What remains of the dying population of Cambodia?

One large photograph of an American actress holding an Asian child in her arms.

What remains of Tomas?

An inscription reading HE WANTED THE KINGDOM OF GOD ON EARTH

What remains of Beethoven?

A frown, an improbably man, and a somber voice intoning “Es muss sein!

What remains of Franz?

An inscription reading A RETURN AFTER LONG WANDERINGS.

And so on and so forth. Before we are forgotten, we will be turned into kitsch. Kitsch is the stopover between being and oblivion.

Page Number: 277-8
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 7, Chapter 4 Quotes

But most of all: No one can give anyone else the gift of the idyll; only an animal can do so, because only animals were not expelled from Paradise. The love between dog and man is idyllic. It knows no conflicts, no hair-raising scenes; it knows no development. Karenin surrounded Tereza and Tomas with a life based on repetition, and he expected the same from them.

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza, Karenin
Page Number: 298
Explanation and Analysis:

If Karenin had been a person instead of a dog, he would surely have long since said to Tereza, “Look, I’m sick and tired of carrying that roll in my mouth every day. Can’t you come up with something different?’’ And therein lies the whole of man’s plight. Human time does not turn in a circle; it runs ahead in a straight line. That is why man cannot be happy: happiness is the longing for repetition

Related Characters: Tomas, Tereza, Karenin
Page Number: 298
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Unbearable Lightness of Being PDF

Tomas Character Timeline in The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The timeline below shows where the character Tomas appears in The Unbearable Lightness of Being. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1, Chapter 3
Power, Politics, and Inequality Theme Icon
The narrator has been thinking about the character of Tomas for years. He sees Tomas standing in front of a window, absentmindedly staring outside. It... (full context)
Time, Happiness, and Eternal Return Theme Icon
Tomas doesn’t know what to do about his feelings for Tereza, but, the narrator says, such... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 4
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One day at the hospital (Tomas is a surgeon), Tereza calls and tells him she is coming to Prague on business.... (full context)
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Inviting Tereza to stay at his flat violates Tomas’s way of living. Tomas, who has long since divorced his wife and abandoned his son,... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 5
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Tomas had been married for less than two years when he divorced his wife, and while... (full context)
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Tomas abides by a set of rules regarding his mistresses. He either sees a woman three... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 6
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Until Tereza, Tomas made a concerted effort to remove all love from his life. If he allowed himself... (full context)
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Whenever Tereza spends the night alone in the small flat Tomas has rented for her, she is unable to sleep. In Tomas’s arms, however, Tereza sleeps... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 7
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One night, Tereza wakes from a nightmare. She tells Tomas that in her dream, she was forced to watch him and Sabina have sex upon... (full context)
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Tomas confronts Tereza about the letter, and she admits to reading it. Tereza tells him to... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 8
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Despite Tomas’s attempts to convince Tereza that the other women in his life mean nothing, Tereza can... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 9
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...makes compassionate love, in Czech at least, a superior form of love. This is how Tomas feels about Tereza—he shares all her emotions, including her anger over his infidelity, and he... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 10
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After two years with Tereza, Tomas still has not given up his mistresses, but he has found he is unable to... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 11
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To convince Tereza of his love for her, Tomas marries her and gives her a puppy. The dog is part Saint Bernard, part German... (full context)
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Even with Karenin’s help, Tomas isn’t able to make Tereza happy, and Tomas becomes acutely aware of this fact on... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 12
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...military but is released the next day. After being released from Russian custody, Tereza asks Tomas why he doesn’t take the job in Zurich. He then asks Tereza if she could... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 13
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Tomas and Tereza move to Switzerland with Karenin, and it isn’t long before Tomas makes plans... (full context)
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Tomas and Tereza live in Zurich for about six months, and then Tomas comes home to... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 14
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Tomas feels “utterly powerless” after Tereza leaves, but he finds this feeling strangely comforting. He is... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 15
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In the following days, Tomas suddenly becomes aware that he is “sick with compassion,” and there is no heavier emotion... (full context)
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Tomas’s words are a reference to one of Beethoven’s quartets, the narrator says. The quartet is... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 16
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...describes Fate, and it implies that only that which is heavy has any real value. Tomas crosses the border into Czechoslovakia and is met with Russian tanks. “Es muss sein!” he... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 17
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Back in Prague, Tomas can’t sleep due to the sounds of Russian airplanes circling the night sky. He thinks... (full context)
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Tomas has returned to Prague because of Tereza, and the need to make such a heavy... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 1
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The narrator claims that he will not try to convince the reader that Tomas and Tereza actually lived. He has created them, and Tereza was born the first day... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 2
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...little is really known about the duality of body and soul. For Tereza, standing at Tomas’s door with a rumbling stomach, the “unity of body and soul” exposed by science was... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 8
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...deep in her bowels, which is exactly where it was the day she first met Tomas. (full context)
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The first time Tereza met Tomas, he was a customer in the restaurant where she worked. He placed a book on... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 9
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Back in Prague after leaving Zurich, Tomas becomes worried that his relationship with Tereza is based on six coincidences. But isn’t an... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 10
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When Tomas closed his book in the restaurant of the small Czech town and motioned to his... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 12
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When Tereza left her small town for Prague to visit Tomas, she felt a slight scratch in her throat. She tried to ignore it, but by... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 13
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When Tomas and Tereza made love, Tereza screamed at the top of her lungs. Her scream was... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 14
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...Tereza found a job in a darkroom, and before long, she was promoted to photographer. Tomas took her out to celebrate, and he became jealous when she danced with another man.... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 15
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...The other women rejoice in their soullessness, but Tereza does not. She doesn’t understand why Tomas stands nearby, shooting the women one after another.     (full context)
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Tomas is the one who has sent Tereza to stand with the other women, the narrator... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 16
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Tereza soon comes to understand that her three reoccurring nightmares are meant to accuse Tomas of his infidelity. She knows that Tomas loves her, and that he sees his mistresses... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 18
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...mother had called Tereza and told her that she was dying of cancer. Tereza told Tomas that she must go home at once, but Tomas was suspicious. He called a colleague... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 19
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Tereza kept thinking about Sabina’s letter to Tomas, the one in which Sabina said she wanted to have sex with him on a... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 20
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Tereza wanted to understand Tomas’s infidelity, which is why she befriended Sabina before Sabina left Prague for Geneva. She went... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 22
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Tereza’s camera was both an eye for her to see Tomas’s mistress through and a way for Tereza to hide her face from Sabina. After a... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 25
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...A year had passed since the Russian invasion, and Tereza’s pictures were “anachronistic.” Tereza agreed. Tomas, too, always said the same thing about her.  (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 26
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In Zurich, Tomas was always at work, and Tereza was left alone with Karenin. She kept thinking about... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 27
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...Still, Karenin tried to establish his routine in Zurich, and he was “the timepiece” of Tomas and Tereza’s lives. (full context)
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One day, the phone rang and Tereza answered it. It was a woman asking for Tomas, and Tereza immediately began thinking of his infidelities. She knew the woman could have been... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 28
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...the fifth day after her arrival, she had made no effort to relocate. That night, Tomas returned. He asked her if she was all right and if she had been to... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 29
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The narrator returns to the present moment. Tomas has a stomachache, and he can’t sleep. As Russian planes fly overhead, Tereza wakes, too.... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 2
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Many years earlier, Tomas had visited Sabina at her art studio in Prague, and he was drawn to the... (full context)
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To Tomas, the bowler hat “denied” Sabina’s femininity. It “violated and ridiculed it,” and when Tomas put... (full context)
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...death left the hat in her possession. The hat is also “a prop” used by Tomas during sex and a symbol of Sabina’s individuality. It is a “sentimental object” and a... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 7
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...but Sabina really thinks he is weak. He doesn’t order her to strip the way Tomas did, and Franz believes that to love someone is to renounce all strength. Franz and... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 10
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...lives in Paris for nearly three years, and then she receives a letter from Simon, Tomas’s son, which informs her of Tomas and Tereza’s deaths. (full context)
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According to Simon’s letter, Tomas and Tereza had lived the last few years in a small town in Czechoslovakia. They... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 1
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...from work, it is already late, and by the time she climbs into bed with Tomas, it’s nearly the middle of the night. She leans over to kiss him and smells... (full context)
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...six o’clock, the alarm goes off, and Karenin jumps onto the bed, licking Tereza and Tomas. Karenin has been up waiting for hours (as he always is) but waited for the... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 2
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Tomas is listening to a program about the Czech emigration. It is made up of private... (full context)
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Tereza tells Tomas about a time when she was a young girl and kept a secret diary. Tereza’s... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 3
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Tereza always gets up to have breakfast with Tomas, even though she works until midnight. If she didn’t get up for breakfast, she wouldn’t... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 4
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...She has been thinking about her mother a lot recently, which is why she told Tomas about her reading the diary at the dinner table. When private conversations are broadcast on... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 6
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...hates her body. Her body doesn’t have enough power to be “the only body in Tomas’s life,” and she longs to dismiss it and become only a soul. (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 7
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...to work and returns home well after midnight as usual. She climbs into bed with Tomas and is again struck by the strong smell of another woman in his hair. (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 8
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Tomas always tries to convince Tereza that love and sex are different things, and she tries... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 11
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Tereza looks at Tomas and admits that she can’t take his infidelity or her guilt anymore. He only came... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 12
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...asks if coming to the hill was her own choice. Tereza doesn’t want to disappoint Tomas, so she says that it was. The man with the rifle asks Tereza if she... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 14
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...and she longs for him and his kindness. She was sent to her death by Tomas, but the other man wanted to help her. The more Tereza thinks about the other... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 15
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...about him except that he is an engineer, and by the third invitation, she accepts. Tomas has always told her that love and sex are two different things, so she decides... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 16
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...to be a good sign. She reaches up and grabs a copy of Sophocles’s Oedipus. Tomas gave her a copy once and couldn’t stop talking about it. Then he wrote an... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 21
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...anything about casual sex. It hasn’t. Tereza’s fidelity was all she had to offer to Tomas, and it was what kept their entire relationship together. After a while, Tereza goes to... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 22
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When Tereza and Tomas were in the first year of their relationship, Tereza used to scream during sex. She... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 25
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...no longer matter, but Tereza feels a strong desire to go backward, so she and Tomas decide to go for a night at a country spa they went to years earlier,... (full context)
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When Tereza and Tomas arrive at the spa hotel, which was previously named “Grand,” they find that it has... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 26
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...more than ever that it was a trap. Just the other day she laughed at Tomas’s Czech radio program because they all failed to see that they are living in a... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 27
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After leaving the spa, Tomas and Tereza go to a small café, where Tomas runs into one of his old... (full context)
Part 4, Chapter 28
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...exist of her with the tall stranger. Maybe the secret police will show them to Tomas, she thinks to herself. Tomas probably wouldn’t kick her out, but the thought of him... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 1
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When Tereza first came to Prague, Tomas had thought her like a child who had been floated downstream in a basket. He... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 2
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Tomas follows politics closely, and the general consensus is that while some Communists know their ideology... (full context)
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Sometime later, Tomas is called in to meet with the newspaper’s editor. He asks Tomas to change the... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 3
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After Tomas comes back to Prague from Zurich, he takes his old job back at the hospital.... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 4
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Tomas is the best surgeon at the hospital, and there is talk that he will one... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 5
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Tomas takes a job at a country clinic, but he isn’t allowed to operate anymore and... (full context)
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The dignitary asks Tomas if he really believes that Communists should put out their eyes, and Tomas tells him... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 6
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Tomas is deeply depressed after the visit from the dignitary. What if he was seen talking... (full context)
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Telling the dignitary he will write his own letter buys Tomas some time. He quits his job at the clinic the next day and assumes that... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 7
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As a surgeon, Tomas spent every day with human bodies. He cut them open with a scalpel and inspected... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 8
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Tomas loves Beethoven because Tereza loves Beethoven, so he has no idea about the story behind... (full context)
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When Tomas starts his job as a window washer, he experiences some initial shock. Soon, however, he... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 9
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Tomas figures that he has had sex with around 200 women in his lifetime, which he... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 10
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...other hand, is not looking for a specific type of woman and is never disappointed. Tomas is an “epic” womanizer, and like the others, he is a “curiosity collector.” (full context)
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One day, Tomas is called to an apartment to clean the windows, and the door is opened by... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 11
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Within a few days, Tomas is again sent to the tall woman’s house to clean windows. When she answers the... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 12
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A few days later, Tomas is with a woman he frequently has sex with during the day. She reminds Tomas... (full context)
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To say “nonlove” is not to say that Tomas was not fond of the woman, because he was. He simply did not love her.... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 13
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The next day, a private customer requests Tomas specifically to wash the windows, but Tomas is not looking forward to whoever it is.... (full context)
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The editor and Simon do not want Tomas to wash the windows; they want him to sign a petition. They are asking all... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 14
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The editor tells Tomas that he really enjoyed the Oedipus article, and Simon comments that some ideas are very... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 15
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...not a word of it was cited, and all the signatories have been publicly defamed. Tomas isn’t surprised, but he still wonders if he did the right thing in refusing to... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 16
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Tomas thinks about a planet where people from earth would go to be born again. They... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 17
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By Tomas’s third year washing windows, it is no longer a vacation. One day, while Tomas is... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 18
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Tomas hardly sees Tereza anymore. They are only off from work on Sundays, but they sleep... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 19
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...occupation, and in the following years, the death rate in Czechoslovakia rises significantly. One day, Tomas goes to the funeral of a famous biologist who was ejected from the Academy of... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 20
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One afternoon while washing a storefront window, Tomas runs into an old colleague from the hospital. He is polite but standoffish, and Tomas... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 21
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Later that night, Tomas develops terrible stomach pains, a condition he always experiences with deep depression. He usually keeps... (full context)
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Tomas’s stomach aches even more. He thinks that his womanizing may be “something of an ‘Es... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 22
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Tomas wakes in the middle of the night and realizes that he had a series of... (full context)
Part 5, Chapter 23
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Several half-naked women were pulling at Tomas when he saw the woman on the couch. She was half-naked, too, wearing only underwear,... (full context)
Part 6, Chapter 23
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...many familiar eyes, like at parties and dinners. The third group, such as Tereza and Tomas, need the constant gaze of one specific person. The fourth group, where Franz fits, require... (full context)
Part 6, Chapter 24
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Simon lives in the country like Tomas, and a few years back, he began to send his father letters. By Simon’s third... (full context)
Part 6, Chapter 28
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As soon as Simon hears about Tomas’s death, he runs to handle the funeral arrangements. On Tomas’s gravestone, Simon has the following... (full context)
Part 6, Chapter 29
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...the Grand March is a picture of the American actress, and all that remains of Tomas is a tombstone that reads: “HE WANTED THE KINGDOM OF GOD ON EARTH.” All that... (full context)
Part 7, Chapter 1
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Tereza and Tomas sell nearly everything they own in Prague and move to the country. The country is... (full context)
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...one actually wants to live there, and country people are mostly left alone. Tereza and Tomas went to the country voluntarily, and they had no problem finding a small cottage and... (full context)
Part 7, Chapter 3
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...get up for his morning walk. Tereza marks a place out between two apple trees. Tomas asks her if she is marking Karenin’s grave, but she doesn’t answer.  (full context)
Part 7, Chapter 5
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Tomas and Tereza decide that it is time to euthanize Karenin. He is suffering, and neither... (full context)
Part 7, Chapter 6
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Tomas sits at his desk holding a letter. He hands the letter, which requests his presence... (full context)
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When the plane lands, Tereza and Tomas see three men outside wearing hooded masks and holding rifles. They step off the plane,... (full context)
Part 7, Chapter 7
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Tomas is again sitting at his desk with a letter, but this letter is from his... (full context)
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Tereza convinces Tomas to invite Simon to visit. They can tell by the postmark which collective farm he... (full context)
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...takes a bath and thinks about how “aggressive” her weakness was, and how it  “transformed [Tomas] into the rabbit in her arms." She is just stepping out of the tub when... (full context)
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...for the night. They drink, and Tereza dances with the collective farm chairman and then Tomas. As they dance, Tereza apologizes for making him return to Prague. She says it’s all... (full context)
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After drinking and dancing, Tereza and Tomas go upstairs to their room. They feel both happiness and sadness. Sadness because they are... (full context)