Reading of Milan Kundera’s The Festival of Insignificance

I’m not a person of musical talent, but Milan Kundera’s work does gave me a sense of “reprise” as he once mentioned. I’m very fond of the seven chapter structure as always, and his way of dealing with the “insignificance”.

In his works, usually one could feel the laughter between the lines, and once again, this book is also about laughter, a laughter in general, a more philosophical laughter that philosophers like Kant or Schopenhauer delves into. Somehow, the laughter in Milan Kundera’s works never be the happy laughter, rather, they are bitter laughter. It’s an attitude to treat the most serious issues in life (including life itself) with a laughter that created by “good mood”. That’s where the insignificance lies.

Kundera’s work has never been lack of political elements, they are between the lines, in the background and everywhere. In Sontag’s Alice In Bed, she portrayed a sleepy character Kundry, and it somehow connects me with Kundera’s name. Kundera writes about jokes and laughter, insignificance and lightness, that’s his pattern. As Kundry keeps sleeping the whole time instead of dealing with tea party or any significant communication, it’s such an insignificant reaction to the “thing” (or “Ding” in German) that people usually take too much into account to.

To myself: It might be a good idea to re-read “Joke” and compares it with “Witz”.

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