Knowledge Is Power vs. Knowledge Is Pain

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Alison McCracken

Professor Harrison

English 100

19 Aug. 2012

Knowledge is Power vs. Knowledge is Pain.

Metaphors are not just a part of everyday language. Whether we realize it or not, they are actually deeply ingrained in our psyche and therefore have practical repercussions in our lives. "Knowledge is Power" is a metaphor to which we can easily relate. It expresses who we are as individuals and our personal drive for success. It defines us as teachers, parents and leaders. It dictates the state of the world around us as it pertains to our government, and defines success for organizations that cause awareness and thus create change. It is through consideration of an alternative metaphor, "Knowledge is Pain" that we are made aware of the more unfortunate aspects of knowledge.  Earning a college degree not only leads to great personal satisfaction, but enables individuals to gain a higher ranking in the workplace hierarchy. From this experience, we gain added responsibility. This specialized knowledge leads to increased 'success' and therefore increased power. As a result, we come to manage more people and earn more money. Similarly, teachers and parents consider knowledge as a defining factor in becoming accomplished leaders. Teachers earn degrees and encourage their pupils to do the same. They in turn pass these expectations on to their own children. Thus, knowledge can clearly be seen as a powerful entity which contributes to our success. Let us consider an alternative metaphor, “Knowledge is Pain.” With increased knowledge comes a deeper insight of the world around us. Can such knowledge bring a heightened sense of pain and unhappiness? We have all heard of ignorance being described as 'bliss'. On the contrary, understanding the world and our place within it can be a painful truth. Since ancient times, government has been closely associated with religion. When we think of both concepts, we envision a higher power. Government exercises control...
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