The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

by

Milan Kundera

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The Unbearable Lightness of Being: Part 4, Chapter 21 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Sitting on the bathroom floor with the crow, Tereza thinks about the tall stranger. She asks herself if her visit to the tall stranger has taught her 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 the kitchen for something to eat, and when she returns, the crow is dead.
In Tereza’s eyes, her infidelity represents the death of her and Tomas’s love, and this is reflected in the death of the crow. Tereza takes sole responsibility for keeping their relationship together, and here she believes it is her fault, not Tomas’s, that their love has, in a sense, died. This reflects the unequal power distribution within their relationship: Tomas is off the hook but Tereza suffers, even though both their actions have contributed to the current situation.
Themes
Sex, Love, and Duality of Body and Soul Theme Icon
Power, Politics, and Inequality Theme Icon