Thursday, October 30, 2008

Plato Was Right!!

A new UT poll shows that 23% of Texans believe that Barack Obama is a Muslim.

5 comments:

Paul Gowder said...

Please: Plato was right about Texans.

729 said...

I just got a fabulous Plato-related tee-shirt. It asks:

Enjoying the shadow play?

I was planning to wear it on the day I'll be teaching the Divided Line and Myth of the Cave, but, I've reconsidered this. It's appropriate to wear it everyday.

Spiros said...

Gowder,

But he was right about democracy giving equal political power to the wise and the foolish alike....

Spiros said...

The tee-shirt is just another shadow, another image... Jeezsch... Didn't you see *The Matrix*????

729 said...

Spiros: Ah...but not all images are equal! --at least if we go by the Republic. A majority of images seduce us from thought, while other types of images are constructed so as to assist it--geometrical images, and, arguably ones like the divided live and cave as well.

The really interesting thing is that in the description of the cave, it so happens that occasionally a prisoner breaks free from his/her chains. How does that happen? We aren't told, exactly. Maybe it is through an encounter with someone who has broken free and returned (as depicted in "The Matrix"). Maybe it has to do with asking certain sorts of questions about the images one takes for granted (For example, and image of an image establishes a distinction between object and meta-levels. Once a gap or paradox appears to us, we are forced to think.)

In any case, students getting the "joke" of the tee-shirt raises the very question about whether or not escape from the cave is possible, and, in my book, I'd much rather embark on discussions like that than for the cave to collapse into just one more image that they encounter, perhaps memorize for an exam and promptly forget. Of course, I don't expect everyone to "get" the joke, or ask any questions about the nature of images in the Republic or how escape from the cave is possible, but in that the two of us are in agreement about what Plato has warned about!