- Term Papers, Book Reports, Research Papers and College Essays

The Allegory of the Caveð'ðžð'ð in Different Perspectives

Essay by   •  November 30, 2010  •  Research Paper  •  1,916 Words (8 Pages)  •  1,480 Views

Essay Preview: The Allegory of the Caveð'ðžð'ð in Different Perspectives

Report this essay
Page 1 of 8

Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё in Different Perspectives

Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the Cave,Ð'ÐŽÐ'Ё written by Plato, is an interpretation of a

conversation between Socrates, PlatoÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s mentor, and Glaucon, one of Socrates

students. Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё can be interpreted several different ways.

Imagine men in a cave chained up by their necks and legs, forcing them to only

look forward at a wall. An opening behind them lets the light in. Above the

burning fire and chains, there is a road. Have these chained men ever seen

anything else of themselves or others beyond the caveÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s shadows made by the

fire? Some people would say the truth is only perceived by the shadows seen

on the walls of the cave. What if one of these menÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s chains were taken off and

he was free to leave? Would the man feel pain when seeing the real world?

Would he be confused on believing what is real? Would it make a difference if

the chained man was briefly educated about what he was going to see first?

Perhaps he would understand and not be confused about what is real. Will the

man think what he saw before was much more real than what he sees now?

Questions like these will bring different opinions and meaning to Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of

the Cave.Ð'ÐŽÐ'Ё Whose interpretation, if any, is correct when explaining the meaning

of Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё? Does it have mathematical meaning, explain a

vision of the whole world, or is it just a comparison to the field of social work? I

personally feel that Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё is a great explanation of how

people in the world live. People are just like the men chained inside the cave,

people only know and believe what he or she might have seen. Outside of the

cave is the world around us. People are very narrow minded beings, a persons

perception on life is only from their own experiences. When the chained men

are let free is when people finally realize what is going on in the world and not

just what is around them.

Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё can be interpreted with different meanings,

such as Michael OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦LearyÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s theory of the cave being a place away from the world.

Michael OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary believes Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё is PlatoÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s explanation of the

education of the soul towards enlightenment. He sees it as what happens when

someone is educated to the level of a philosopher (OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary). OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary also

explains that Plato contends that the men must Ð'ÐŽÐ'§go back into the caveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё or return

to everyday world of politics, greed, and power struggles. Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the

CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё also attacks people who rely upon, or are slaves to, their senses. The

chains that bind the prisoners are the senses (OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary). Even though OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary

has a reasonable explanation as to why he believes what he does, which

includes solid evidence, his interpretation may not necessarily be correct. The

shadows might not be what people rely on as the truth. The cave might not be

an interpretation of a personsÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦ sheltered life from the true reality. Michael

OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary might be correct about the meaning, but at the same time Plato could be

trying to explain something else.

Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё can be also interpreted by using metaphorical

imagery. Socrates, in Book VII of The Republic just after the allegory, stated

that the cave was our world and the fire was our sun (Jerry H. Gill 1). Major

assumptions inherited within the metaphorical imagery were made by Plato.

Plato also says that the Ð'ÐŽÐ'§path of the prisoners was manÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s souls ascent to

knowledge or enlightenmentÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё (OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary). Plato helped introduce our world of

sight with an intellectual world of opinion. A personsÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦ world of sight allows a

person to Ð'ÐŽÐ'§seeÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё things that are not real, such as a perfect circle. Plato calls this

higher understanding of the world Ð'ÐŽÐ'§abstract realityÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё or the intelligible world

(OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary). He compares this abstract reality with the knowledge that comes from

reasoning and final understanding (OÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦Leary). Abstract reality is a reasonable

explanation on PlatoÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s Ð'ÐŽÐ'§The Allegory of the CaveÐ'ÐŽÐ'Ё. Using



Download as:   txt (12.5 Kb)   pdf (130.8 Kb)   docx (14.5 Kb)  
Continue for 7 more pages »
Only available on
Citation Generator

(2010, 11). The Allegory of the Caveð'ðžð'ð in Different Perspectives. Retrieved 11, 2010, from''-in-Different-Perspectives/16883.html

"The Allegory of the Caveð'ðžð'ð in Different Perspectives" 11 2010. 2010. 11 2010 <''-in-Different-Perspectives/16883.html>.

"The Allegory of the Caveð'ðžð'ð in Different Perspectives.", 11 2010. Web. 11 2010. <''-in-Different-Perspectives/16883.html>.

"The Allegory of the Caveð'ðžð'ð in Different Perspectives." 11, 2010. Accessed 11, 2010.''-in-Different-Perspectives/16883.html.