The Matrix and the Allegory of the Cave

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Qais Alizada Oct/12/2012 The Matrix and The Allegory of the Cave
For an unbelievably long time, we have been all asking ourselves this question: What is real? Both science and religion have furnished us with their own answers to this fundamental question of reality. We ultimately cannot know what is real. In The Wachowskis’ story, The Matrix, people refuse to accept the truth. The truth, being the fact, that they are in a controlled world where nothing is real. In the excerpt, The Allegory of the Cave, from Book VII of The Republic, written by Plato and narrated by Socrates, argues that life is ironic because in our quest to find the truth, all we see are our own shadows. Both “The Matrix” and “The Allegory of the Cave” have a time of rejection and a time of acceptance. The main theme presented in both stories is the nature of reality and this theme is proven in both “The Matrix” and “The Allegory of the Cave.” The only thing these ideas point to is the same underlying intuition, mainly, that the world as we experience it, is not truly, what it seems.

Let’s start off with the work of Plato and the Socrates. The plot in “The Allegory of the Cave,” has a scenario in which prisoners are bound by shackles from birth. They sit facing a wall inside a cave. From birth, these prisoners have only experienced the shadows on the wall, cast by puppeteers carrying objects things like animals, and human beings. These people, in their ignorance, take these shadows for the real things. In the course of the allegory, we are all told that one lucky prisoner is finally freed and forced to turn around to the real reality. At first, he sees the source of the shadows he has been watching his whole life. He now knows that the shadows are caused by a blazing fire. Eventually, this character is dragged outside and is completely blinded and dazzled by the sun’s light (“the...
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