The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The Unbearable Lightness of Being


Milan Kundera

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The Unbearable Lightness of Being: Part 4, Chapter 22 Summary & Analysis

When Tereza and Tomas were in the first year of their relationship, Tereza used to scream during sex. She had wanted to overcome her senses and become blind and deaf. She doesn’t scream anymore, but her soul had indeed been “blinded by love.” Tereza’s afternoon with the tall stranger has made her soul see again. Thinking about that day, she doesn’t think about the stranger—she hardly remembers him, in fact—but rather, she thinks about herself. She longs to see her own body again close to another, and she secretly wishes the tall stranger would come into the bar where she works.
Tereza’s screams were her attempt to get rid of the duality of body and soul. The fact that she can “see” again after her encounter with the stranger implies that she has come to a basic truth of some sort. Tereza has always hated her body and wished she could somehow disengage herself from it. Of course, this isn’t possible, and now Tereza realizes that she has been ignoring a vital part of herself in her attempts to rid herself of her body.
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