The passage from Testaments Betrayed by Czech writer Milan Kundera discusses the basic idea of the preservation of privacy and the criminality of the failure to do so. The passage considers the situation that occurred between two important Russian figures around the early 1970's. Through complete examination of the circumstance and Kundera's stance, the sheer irony of the chain of events is clearly manifested and public and private are proved indeed to be two distinct realms of existence.
The complete irony embodied in the series of events serves to convey and support Kundera's claim that "curtain-rippers are criminals." As suspected, dealings between Jan Prochazka and Professor Vaclav Cerny, a well-known figure with anticommunist sentiment, sparked heightened surveillance. Still, the police's ultimate decision to record these meetings and broadcast them by radio was the poision that failed to discredit Prochazka yet succeeded in contributing to their own death and destruction.
Clearly evident, the actions of the police infringed on the privacy of the two individuals. Through these illicit actions the public's eyes were opened up to a greater wrong than the talk and aspirations of two human beings. They were opened up to the irreparable actions of introducing two differing spheres, private and public life. The fact that the scandal did in part discredit Prochazka initially, demonstrates the overall deceptiveness of the act and in turn makes the public's final realization of the travesty stronger and more resolute.
The basis for this realization and failed attempt at discrediting Prochazka lies within the inescapable fact that private and public domains are to remain separated. Kundera successfully conveys this view to his reader in the passage. In doing so, Kundera provides realistic examples of how differently people act in private. "A person...slurs friends, uses course language...floats heretical ideas he'd never admit in...