Milan Kundera's Indictment Against Human Individuality Essay

2956 WordsMay 17, 201312 Pages
The Unbearable Lightness of Being: An Indictment against Human Individuality In Milan Kundera’s “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” (Nesnesitelná lehkost bytí), Lightness represents negligence and flightiness. The lightness of being denotes liberation and buoyancy, an "absolute absence of burden". (3)Weight of life connotes human experience in every means of heaviness and burdens. There is no denying that human innately intend to lead an unshackled life, and thus, the lightness of being. Yet would an ethereal life be a complete equivalent to felicity of mankind? Eternal Recurrence, a doctrine developed by Friedrich Nietzsche, dedicates all things in existence would recur perpetually for eternity. An existence is thereby weighty when confined to its human impotence of inescapability. (Nietzsche 195) Kundera had argued of an inverse of such doctrine. The occurrences of everything in nature are unique and would not recur in their brief existence. Men could only live once under dynamic, or ever-changing, contexts and circumstances. Consequently, recurrence and such heaviness would be invalid. Kundera created the protagonist, Tomas, as a symbol of possibility to such existence. He was a libertine with a strong faith in a German phrase, “Einmal ist Keinmal”. (Once is never) (3) Therefore, Tomas had treated everything lightly, in pursuit of freedom, the apparent "sweetness" of lightness of being. This can be proven in three aspects, his family, love and career. Tomas was once married. Even though the couple gave birth to a son, the short-lived marriage last for merely two years. After divorce, the custody of the son was granted to his ex-wife, Tereza. Tomas was prohibited to visit his son. Thenceforth, Tomas decided only to pay full alimony, but unwilling to dispute his son. Found no sympathizers, his action angered his parents. If Tomas refused to take interest in

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