Allegory of the Cave
An allegory is essentially a story that one may interpret to reveal a hidden meaning in the story.
Other examples of allegories in modern literature would be John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress or
William Golding's The Lord of the Flies. In modern cinema, movies such as James Cameran's Avatar
are also considered allegories. I believe Plato used the allegory of the dark cave to illustrate his point
because darkness can symbolize mystery and the lack of knowledge. Its the same with Plato using the
bright sun outside the cave to illustrate knowledge, light is a symbol of knowledge. That is why when
one knows something, he is considered to be ...view middle of the document...
I agree with his statement, for when people see a shadow or other shape of something
that doesn't physically exist, it still exists in our minds as knowledge.
Plato also said that the philosophers should be forced to return to the metaphorical cave against
their wishes. The philosophers don't want to return because their “eyes are accustomed to the light”,
and they no longer see things as the non enlightened people do. They therefore don't want to return to
avoid being mocked by the people who are accustomed to “the shadows.” The philosophers, however,
must return to rule over the those who only know the shadows, for the philosophers are more
enlightened and better fit to rule. Although being forced back into the cave is not in the interest of the
philosophers, it is for the good of all that they return to the cave and use the knowledge that they have
acquired and use it to govern and teach those who are not enlightened.
In the allegory of the cave, the sun is a symbol of light and knowledge. Everything that we are
able to see each day is because the sun provides us with light and allows us to gain knowledge. When