The Unbearable Lightness of Being

by: Milan Kundera

Suggested Essay Topics

Of the four main characters, only Sabina remains alive at the end of the novel. Is this an optimistic ending to her story?

Even Sabina, betrayal and originality personified in so many ways, finds herself susceptible to kitsch as she grows older. She listens to bad, nostalgic music and regrets leaving her parents. How can one reconcile this with her overall hatred of kitsch?

How does Kundera understand romantic love, as evidenced by his portrayal of Tomas and Tereza, Tomas and Sabina, and Sabina and Franz?

In interviews, Kundera has complained that if he writes a 200-page love story and includes three lines about politics, critics call his novel a political novel of ideas. To what extent can The Unbearable Lightness of Being be considered a political novel?

Why does Kundera structure the novel in several parts, telling the same story over and over again from different perspectives and filling in details? What affect does this have on the reader, and what significance can be found in this depiction of time?