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Starter From what you learnt last lesson, summarise the Allegory of the Cave in 5 bullet points.

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Presentation on theme: "Starter From what you learnt last lesson, summarise the Allegory of the Cave in 5 bullet points."— Presentation transcript:

1 Starter From what you learnt last lesson, summarise the Allegory of the Cave in 5 bullet points

2 Lesson Objectives By the end of this lesson you will:
Have refreshed your knowledge of the Allegory of the Cave Understand Plato’s Theory of Forms Begin to reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of the Theory

3 Task In groups Re-create/animate Plato’s Cave using the Play-Doh and film it using the flip cameras Plato’s Allegory of the Cave is symbolic - each of the different ideas must be explained You have 30 minutes!!

4 What is real? How do you know?

5 Plato’s Theory of Forms
The idea of the Forms is illustrated in the Allegory of the Cave. Plato believed true reality existed beyond normal perceptions of the world. What we perceive around us is a shadow of this truth.

6 Plato’s Theory of Forms
According to Plato the world we live in is a poor imitation of the real world. Our world is constantly changing and we rely on our senses to understand what is going on. You are not the same person you were 3 years/hours/seconds ago, cells are forever changing and ideas flit through our minds. Plato was therefore sure that the real world is outside the one we live in. This real world is unchanging and eternal. It is the world of ideas not senses, where there are perfect forms of the things we know on earth.

7 Transitory- moves in time and space Outside of time and space Relative
The Material World The World of the Forms Transitory- moves in time and space Outside of time and space Relative Real and absolute Changing Unchanging Impermanent Permanent Superficial What matters most Contradictory- are subject to opinion NO-contradiction- they are NOT subject to opinion Sensory Beyond the senses Can be measured Immeasurable Imperfect Perfect

8 Activity Draw a dog or write down the essential qualities that define a dog

9 It is impossible to get a clear definition and rule out other animals at the same time.
A 3 year old would have no problem distinguishing a dog from another animal. The child is identifying the form whilst we are getting bogged down with the details. The Form is not a shape, it is the essence of an object. A dog and all dogs have a degree of ‘dogginess’ due to participating in the form.

10 Recognising Forms We can recognise Forms because we are born with a dim recollection of them from our prior existence in the world of the Forms. There is an inner part of us (the soul) that does not change. It is eternal and, before it became tied down by a body, it was connected with the real world of Forms.

11 However… The world of the Forms is the philosopher’s world.
The ordinary person struggles to see past the illusion of this world because they are ruled by their senses. Only the person who investigates and questions learns the truth behind the illusion. Only the philosopher is capable of seeing into the world of the Forms because he can make judgements as he thinks independently of his senses.

12 Same with beauty? What comes into your mind when you think of the word ‘beauty’? With the person next to you talk about something or someone who you would describe as ‘beautiful’


14 The beautiful person participates or shares in beauty with all other beautiful things, but beauty itself is beyond our normal perception. “Her eyes are too close together” – we can recognise that she falls short of beauty and thus understand the concept of beauty due to our prior knowledge, yet we have not ever experienced a perfect example of beauty.

15 Summing up... The Material World (our world) The World of the Forms
Here the material objects exist, subject to change and decay. They take their identity from the way that they conform to their corresponding idea in the world of the Forms. The material world is a shadow of the ‘real’ world of the Forms. The World of the Forms Here the patterns for the objects and concepts for the material world exist in a state of unchanging perfection. It is the job of the philosopher to break free from the shackles of the material world and find the world of the Forms.

16 Summing up continued… A Form is what a thing is
Forms for Plato are unchanging and eternal Objects in this world imitate a Form which exists in the real world e.g. A beautiful person is an image of beauty We are born with a recollection of what Forms are Forms are only accessible to philosophers

17 Task Draw a cartoon/diagram/picture of the philosopher looking up to the sun surrounded by lesser ‘earth-bound mortals’. Demonstrate your understanding of Plato’s Theory of Forms by using arrows to explanations or other images if you wish. This will be a good revision aid later.

18 Homework Do you believe Plato’s theory or do you not? Write an explanation as to why. Imagine you are going to get the chance to meet Plato and discuss his teachings. Write 3, well thought out questions that you would want to ask him. Complete the last task of the Plato pack you got last lesson. Watch ‘The Matrix’!!

19 Traffic lights… Could you explain the Allegory of the Cave in your own words? Do you know the difference between the material world and the world of the Forms? Could you explain why Plato says the world we live in is not the real world? Could you give a definition of a Form? Do you understand Plato’s Theory of the Forms?

20 How do we know a chair is a chair?



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