© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The Unbearable Lightness of Being


by Milan Kundera

Analysis: Trivia

Brain Snacks: Tasty Tidbits of Knowledge

In 2008, the Czech weekly Respekt published a story regarding an investigation into Kundera as an informant for the Communist Party in 1950. Kundera was outraged and vehemently denied the accusations. (Source)

In the Chapter 1 of the novel, Kundera writes: "In the sunset of dissolution, everything is illuminated by the aura of nostalgia, even the guillotine" (1.1.6). Jonathan Safran Foer takes the title for his 2002 novel Everything Is Illuminated from this line.

The band "Bright Eyes" has a track on their album Letting Off the Happiness called "Tereza and Tomas."

Apparently everyone likes to mimic Kundera's title. An IMDB search turned up such films as: The Unbearable Rightness of Diversity (2008), The Unbearable Whiteness of Dean (1995), The Unbearable Sheerness of Stockings (2002), and The Unbreakable Likeness of Lincoln (2000).

In the 2000 movie High Fidelity, John Cusack's character jokingly refers to Unbearable Lightness as "a book about girls."

In 1985, Kundera was given the Jerusalem Award, a biennial literary award given to writers whose work has dealt with themes of politics, freedom, and government. Other recipients include Jorge Borges (1971) and Arthur Miller (2003). (Source)

The American Film Institute lists The Unbearable Lightness of Being (the 1988 film) as #87 on its list of the top 100 love stories in American cinema. (Source)

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...