The Cave: Reality And The Republic American University Essay

1897 words - 8 pages

Maddie McCarthy 
Govt 105- Dr. Utter 
March 8, 2019 
The Allegory of the Cave and Reality 
Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" presents a vision of humans as slaves chained in front of a 
fire observing the shadows of things on the cave wall in front of them. The shadows are the only 
"reality" the slaves know. Plato argues that there is a basic flaw in how we humans mistake our 
limited perceptions as reality, truth and goodness. The allegory reveals how that flaw affects our 
education, our spirituality, and our politics. When describing the allegory of the cave, Socrates 
asks what one would think if once they left the cave, they were told "what [they] saw before was 
nonsense, but now [they are] a little closer to reality" (515d2-4). In this essay, I will explore the 
cave and the idea of closer to the true nature of reality. 
The allegory metaphorically describes our situation as human beings in the world today. 
In his story, Plato utilizes several key elements to portray his metaphor of the human condition. 
Plato's image contains pertinent ideas about society that are relevant to everyday life. Through 
this reading, I have begun to discover the ideal form, the use of reason over perception to 
approach, view, and judge all things. Prisoners, watching life unfold on the cave wall in front of 
them, accepting what they see as truth, as reality, are literal people. Every average person in this 
world is a prisoner, chained down.  
Because of how we live, true reality is not obvious to most of us. However, we mistake 
what we see and hear for reality and truth. This is a difficult and painful struggle. When 
individuals step into the sunshine, their eyes slowly acclimate to the light and their fundamental 
view of the world, of reality, is transformed. They come to see a deeper, more genuine, authentic 
reality: a reality marked by reason. He defines the ultimate truth as “Aletheia,” which translates 
to mean “unhidden” or “that which does not remain unnoticed.” Through his use of the term and 
his allegory of the cave, Plato makes the strong implication that philosophers must actively seek 
to discover the absolute truth, rather than relying on traditional methods of contemplation and the 
persuasive tone of rhetoric to prove its existence. The individual then makes the painful 
readjustment back into the darkness of the cave to free the prisoners. However, because he now 
seems mad- describing a new strange reality- they reject him to the point of threatening to kill 
him. Plato's Allegory of the Cave is a direct representation of the human condition, the 
circumstances we as humans presently encounter, circumstances such as conceptual frameworks, 
or basic beliefs, and our typical behaviors in society.  
To break free in this world, one must look at objects, individuals, cities and societies, 
even the universe as a whole, with reason. In order to grasp concepts, one can not simply rely on 
perceptions and senses. People carrying figures of...

Other Essays On The Cave: Reality and the Republic - American University - Essay

Plato's Republic: The Discussion of Poverty and Wealth - Writing 101 - Essay

593 words - 3 pages Maria Allard Professor Worcester Writing in The Liberal Arts November 3, 2018 Socrates’ Unsteady Conviction In Book IV of The Republic of Plato, Socrates proposes that the city in speech is happier without the strain of money and wealth. “Then from both poverty and wealth the products of the arts are worse and the men themselves are worse.” (421 e) He fears that money hinders productivity and promotes negligence. Socrates’ stance on wealth and

Thesis on how the Texas Republic was stable - American History - Thesis paper

2103 words - 9 pages The Stability of the Republic of Texas American History April 11, 2018 After the revolution, the Republic of Texas, also called the Lone Star Republic, was free from the dictatorship of Mexico. With economic and diplomatic ties, proper money management, strong leaders, the ability to defend itself, and a well-organized government the Republic of Texas was set up to succeed.[endnoteRef:1] Although the Lone Star Republic was self-sustaining and

The Advantages and Disadvantages of LEO and GEO orbits for Communications - American Public University/SPST501 - Essay

905 words - 4 pages LEO AND GEO 5 The Advantages and Disadvantages of LEO and GEO orbits for Communications John Fitzgerald Kennedy Moore American Public University System Running head: LEO AND GEO 1 Abstract When comparing the different orbits, it is important to understand the basics of the orbits. Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) and Low Earth Orbit (LEO) are two critical orbits that support communications satellites. What are the advantages and disadvantage of

the yellow pill whos reality is real - psychology - essay

899 words - 4 pages The Yellow Pill In the short story, “The yellow pill” written by Rog Phillips, a science fiction introducing psychological roles in reverse. There are two realities: Jerry’s reality, and Dr. Cedrick Elton’s reality. The audience does not know what to believe -- at first. The story begins with Dr. Elton, a psychiatrist, being portrayed as the normal person helping a patient from the Psych Ward. This character Gerald Bocek is in a fantasy

The problem with the soul city analogy in Plato's Republic - Undergraduate studies - Essay

2695 words - 11 pages the relationship is not as black and white Socrates portrays it to be. Thus by displaying this, it can be argued that the principle of specialization is not always correct. One cannot always be minding their business. Humans are too complex to reduce them to just specific duties because in reality humans are the most adaptable to change. [5: Plato, The Republic: Translated by Allan Bloom, 427e] [6: Plato, The Republic: Translated by Allan

Essay on The Republic on what type of philosopher Plato depicts - English - Essay

1268 words - 6 pages book 7 of the republic Socrates uses the allegory of the cave to show how one gains knowledge. He sets up the allegory by stating that there are several prisoners chained up in a cave. For their whole lives the prisoners are only exposed to shadows on the wall cast by a distant fire. These prisoners are only exposed to shadows of people and animals, never the physical objects. These shadows, to the prisoners, are the only thing they know as true

What Problems Did The Weimar Republic Face Between 1919 And 1923?

529 words - 3 pages The Weimar Republic was formed in the town of Weimar in February 1919 when a new German National Assembly was formed after the war. It was a democracy where everybody could vote. The parliament was called the Reichstag.The Weimar Republic had some enemies from both the left and the right. The opposition from the left came from the Spartakus, a group of communists that hoped to take over the Government, and were representing the workers of

Research Essay on The Dominican Republic of Congo - English 10 - Essay

1877 words - 8 pages Kalvin 1 Kalvin Cabrera Mrs. McGuire English 10 17 April 2018 Breaking down on the corruption in the DRC More than 4.1 million people have been forced out of their homes and there have been 45 mass graves in the Kasai region. The country of the Democratic Republic of Congo is being faced with major atrocities and corruption which must be handled with the assistance of the United Nations. The groups involved in these atrocities are the Bana Mura

The Great Gatsby Essay about Daisy and the American dream - The Great Gatsby, American ClassicsH - Essay

654 words - 3 pages The Defective Dream America, as seen by settlers, was a land of unparalleled opportunity. To many however America–or the American dream–is a wild fantasy. One of those many is F. Scott Fitzgerald who uses his novel ​The Great Gatsby​ to depict a story of tragedy, love, and the American dream. Daisy acts as a deep symbol of the superficial and morally questionable American dream. Through her idealistic appearance, yet shallow nature she is F

The Great Gatsby and The American Dream - AP English - Essay

632 words - 3 pages Zach Neal AP English 11 The Great Gatsby Analysis Essay In the novel The Great Gatsby by Scott Fitzgerald and the essay Paradox and Dream by John Steinbeck, the authors present similar ideas, but use different methods to portray them. Similarities can be drawn in the themes of the two texts, specifically in the themes of the pursuit of the American Dream and the use and misuse of wealth. Steinbeck’s Paradox and Dream portrays Americans as “a

Gone With The Wind and the Reconstruction - American History - Essay

579 words - 3 pages Margaret Mitchell’s Civil War classic, Gone With The Wind, gives us a vivid picture of the South during the Civil War and Reconstruction. It follows the leading character, Scarlet O’Hara, who can be seen as a symbol of the South itself. Before the war, Scarlett lives a life of luxury which was typical of many southern belles of the time. She is very snooty, spoiled and led by the rules of the southern aristocracy. While Scarlett is very

Similar Papers

The Alcoholic Republic: An American Tradition History 1101 Essay

1158 words - 5 pages American alcoholism during the 19th century were high levels of anxiety, the rapid growth in population, and alcoholism becoming an American custom. And the rejection of alcohol was caused by finally understanding the negative impact alcohol had on their health and religious figures preaching prominence. The “Alcoholic Republic” delves into the American tradition of extreme alcoholic consumption during the late 1700s and the 1800s. It illustrates

The Challenges And Future Of Virtual Reality Chengdu Technology Of University Essay

1734 words - 7 pages The challenges and future of Virtual Reality Virtual reality (VR) is a new technology by means of computer to control the audience's vision, tactile and hearing into a three-dimensional environment, and in this computer generated simulation environment, users would experience the feeling in the real world. And Heim (1993) also listed the main technology of content included sense of interaction and full-body immersion. In recent years, VR has

Biblical Reflection: St. Paul And The Allegory Of The Cave Philosophy Assignment

842 words - 4 pages him from reality. Moreover, in the Allegory of the Cave, the prisoner escapes and because of the sun he is capable of seeing the world outside of the cave. The prisoner’s eyes need to adjust to the brightness of the sun, and when they do he sees the true reality. In this case we can see that the sun is the provider of his understanding and knowledge of the world around him (2). On the contrary, in the bible passage the voice from the heavens that

What Is Justice In The Perspective Of Thrasymachus And Glaucon In Plato's Republic Philosophy Essay

626 words - 3 pages David 1 Last Name 2 Peter David Professor Mesing Philosophy February 5, 2018 Short Paper (Pair #2) What is justice? The dictionary definition of this word says that it is the legal or philosophical theory by which fairness is administered. However, in Plato’s book “The Republic”, two characters named Glaucon and Thrasymachus have their own version of what this word exactly means to them. In this essay, I am going to thoroughly analyze and make a