AS Philosophy - Plato's Cave

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  • Created by: Priya
  • Created on: 24-12-12 15:48

The Story of the Cave

  • Plato made up a story to establish the difference between an unreal physical world and a real spiritual world lit by the sun.
  • A group of people are sitting facing the back of a wall.
  • They have been chained here since childhood and cannot turn around.
  • Behind them is a fire and between them and the fire there's a raised way.
  • Men pass through this way which creates shadows on the wall opposite the prisoners, some of these men talk and some don't.
  • The prisoners think the shadows are real because they are all they've ever known.
  • One of the prisoners breaks free and goes up the stairs to see the real world.
  • He sees the sun which is realises is the source of life.
  • The real objects around him represent Forms (the true essence of something, e.g. there are many different types of dog breeds but from our knowledge we know what the characteristics of a dog are and we can recognise one…


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