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How Does “The Matrix” Film Connection to “The Allegory of the Cave” by Plato?

In his well-known work titled “The Allegory of the Cave”, Plato makes use of diverse means of expression to teach a moral lesson regarding the relativity of everything that an individual may perceive as common truths. The philosopher uses a deep cave with almost no light as an allegory for living in illusion, and chained prisoners represent people whose entire view of the world is based on heavily distorted information (Plato, B.C.E. 517). The author mentions that in each society, there is “the knowledge that passes as the norm” that can be based on distorted and incomplete information about the world (Plato, B.C.E. 517, p. 4). People that realize the relativity of their assumptions about the world and how it works are often perceived as crazy or ignored (Bullheadent, 2008). Thus, Plato’s work teaches people that it is not productive to take one’s assumptions and conclusions about reality as absolutely accurate. Sometimes, daring to think beyond the box and challenging what is regarded as a norm can promote progress in terms of science and life philosophy.

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The moral lessons taught in Plato’s work and The Matrix are rather similar, and both works promote the idea that people often live in imagined realities and do not even realize how limited their knowledge is. In The Matrix, in one of the scenes, Morpheus argues that everyone is “born into a prison that you cannot smell, see, or touch” (Furtado, 2014). It chimes with Plato’s (B.C.E. 517) idea of living in imprisonment since the first days of one’s life without knowing about the outside world. Another similarity is that both works state that people should try to overcome illusions by themselves, and hearing about reality from others is not enough. Morpheus claims that Neo has to see reality for himself, whereas Plato (B.C.E. 517) states that people usually fail to take liberated prisoners’ words seriously due to having no similar experiences.

References

Bullheadent. (2008). The cave: An adaptation of Plato’s Allegory in clay [Video]. YouTube. Web.

Furtado, F. (2014). Allegory of the Cave – The Matrix scenes [Video]. YouTube. Web.

Plato. (B.C.E. 517). The allegory of the cave. (T. Sheenan, Trans.). In Republic. Web.

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StudyCorgi. "How Does “The Matrix” Film Connection to “The Allegory of the Cave” by Plato?" March 1, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/how-does-the-matrix-film-connection-to-the-allegory-of-the-cave-by-plato/.

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StudyCorgi. 2022. "How Does “The Matrix” Film Connection to “The Allegory of the Cave” by Plato?" March 1, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/how-does-the-matrix-film-connection-to-the-allegory-of-the-cave-by-plato/.

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StudyCorgi. (2022) 'How Does “The Matrix” Film Connection to “The Allegory of the Cave” by Plato'. 1 March.

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