The Death Of A Prisoner Essay

1294 Words Oct 13th, 2016 6 Pages
1. There is an underground cave in which prisoners are chained, since birth, and faced one direction, with no leeway to swivel their heads. All that they can see is the cave wall in front of them. Behind them there is a low wall where puppeteers come and do “shows” with various objects. The prisoners cannot see the actual object that is being shown, however, they can see the shadow of it because of the fire that is also behind them. They hear the echoes of the puppeteers voices behind them bouncing off the cave walls and mistake them for the voices of the shadows in front of them. This leads to a competition on who can best guess the next object that will be shown and explain what it is. They are rewarded for getting this right. One day, a prisoner is let loose to the outside world and has a hard time comprehending what, exactly, is real. He starts with the shadows of objects then reflections on the water. Next, he can see objects for what they really are, including the stars and the sky. He will, then, be able to see the sun and contemplate it. With this new amount of knowledge he turns back to the cave he once left to share with his fellow prisoners. Because of his time spent outside, however, his eyes take too long to adjust and he fails their old “game”. They think that the outside has ruined him and resist all attempts of freedom. Socrates is trying to explain how ones perception of the world changes their knowledge of it. He is, also, painting a picture of the place…

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