The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

by

Milan Kundera

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on The Unbearable Lightness of Being can help.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being: Part 2, Chapter 22 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
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 while, Sabina took the camera and ordered Tereza to “Strip!” It was the same command that Tomas issued, “firmly and authoritatively,” to both Tereza and Sabina whenever he had sex with either one of them, and they both recognized this. Tereza took off her clothes, and Sabina only snapped a few pictures before breaking into laughter. Tereza laughed too, and then they both got dressed.
Tomas’s command to “Strip!” is another example of his power over the women. When he has sex with them, he doesn’t ask them to take their clothes off; rather, he demands it in a “firm” and “authoritative” way. Both Tereza and Sabina are uncomfortable, and their nervous laughter and the fact that Tereza hides behind the camera are proof of this.
Themes
Sex, Love, and Duality of Body and Soul Theme Icon
Power, Politics, and Inequality Theme Icon