Proust describes existential progress as moving from the burden of having towards the freedom of being. Having implies possession, which is a burden and Being means freedom from encumbrance. Marcel believes that releasing oneself from the encumbrance of all possessions occurs at the time of death when one is preparing oneself for eternal life. Death does not mean void for him but a step towards eternity and for this reason sometimes his view is described as Christian existentialism. In her second novel, Voices in the City, Desai explores the theme of death. Monisha’s death becomes instrumental in bringing about significant changes in the attitudes of other major characters.