In the political jargon those days, the word “intellectual” was an insult. It indicated someone who did not understand life and was cut off from the people. All the Communists who were hanged at the time by other Communists were awarded such abuse. Unlike those who had their feet solidly on the ground, they were said to float in the air. So it was fair, in a way, that as a punishment the ground was permanently pulled out under their feet, that they remained suspended a little above the floor.
Kundera blends pathos, tyranny with the airiness of unreality, of fantasy. & oh, so many isms have had the same effect on humanity. Each ism taken seriously enough has never fail to kill us.