Comparison of the Matrix and the Allegory of the Cave

Topics: The Matrix, The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions Pages: 4 (1251 words) Published: November 6, 2012
Composition I
3 October 2012
The Matrix and the Allegory of the Cave

What if one were living through life completely bound and facing a reality that doesn't even exist? The prisoners in Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" are blind from true reality as well as the people in the movie The Matrix. They are given false images and they accept what their senses are telling them. They believe what they are experiencing is not all that really exists. Plato, the ancient Greek philosopher wrote "The Allegory of the Cave," to explain the process of enlightenment and what true reality may be. In the movie The Matrix, Neo (the main character) was born into a world of illusions called the Matrix.

Neo’s true reality is being controlled by the puppet-handlers called “the machines” who use the human body as a source of energy. In the movie, Neo, finds an alternate reality and has to go on a journey to discover himself and what is around him. Much like "The Allegory of the Cave" the prisoners in a dark underground cave, who are chained to the wall, have a view of reality only based upon this limited view of the cave. Both the prisoners of the cave and Neo from The Matrix have to transcend on the path of “enlightenment” to know the truth of their own worlds. Deep within the cave the prisoners are chained by their necks and have a limited view of reality. Around them, by the distant light of the fire, they only see shadows and outlines of people or objects.

The Matrix is comparable to Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" in a number of ways. Similar to the prisoners of the cave, the humans are trapped in what the modern day puppet-handlers (the machines) want them to see. In the movie, Neo is a computer hacker, and one day he suddenly realizes that his world is fake, by finding out the truth after he was released from the pod. Neo discovers that what he has been presented with his entire life is only reflections or merely shadows of the truth.

The puppet-handlers (the machines)...

Cited: Plato. "The Allegory of the Cave." Republic. Harmondsworth:
Penguin, 1974. 240 - 248. Print.
The Matrix. Dir. Andy Wachowski and Larry Wachowski.
Warner Bros. Pictures, 1999. DVD.
Cohen, Marc S. "Allegory of the Cave." Explanation of the Allegory of the Cave., 09 Apr. 2012. Web. 03 Oct. 2012.
"The MATRIX 101 - Understanding The Matrix." The MATRIX 101. Warner Bros. Pictures, 2003. Web. 03 Oct. 2012.
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