The Republic Book 7.docx

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5 Feb 2013
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The Republic Book 7
- The Cave is meant to be the mirror image of the Ship because it was to
show why philosophers weren't useless: they have insight to knowledge no
one else does
- The Cave shows what the world looks like from the philosopher's point of
view
- Plato is giving us a picture that goes along with the other literary figures but
it is to give a sketch of how the world really works
- The Cave is our situation: we are like people who are chained into place and
can only look forward at the wall; the single source of illumination is a fire
behind them
-there is a roadway where people are holding cardboard cut-outs that casts
a shadow through the fire
-the people stuck in the cave can only see shadows of the imitations of the
real things
-one man breaks free, emerges through the cave and is blinded by the sun,
but finally sees the real world
-he is now in touch with the way things are (the philosopher)
-Plato says that the philosopher has to be forced back into the cave to break
out the other prisoners
-she starts raving about the shadows on the wall and that they are fake but
the other prisoners reject her notion
- The Cave is meant to be an extended portrayal of what the world is like for
the philosopher
-philosophers are those who have knowledge and fundamental principles of
right and wrong
-What's the world like to non-philosophers? They don't know about
fundamental principles and don't know how things really are
-non-philosophers confuse mere shadows with reality
- there is a particular problem that Plato recognizes and tries to answer:
-it looks as though Plato wants the philosopher to do two jobs (violates the
principle of specialization):
-to philosophize
-but he also wants them to run and administer the state and look after the
well-being of their citizens
- it may not be a violation of the P.O.S.:
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