Friday, December 7, 2012

Could the city of Eldorado be compared to the Allegory of the Cave?

The people in Eldorado have never seen the outside world.  They live in a perfect Utopian like society deep in a valley wedged between two cliffs.  The people here are so used to perfect life that they probably take it for granted.  They have no idea what life is like outside of Eldorado.  I think this is very similar to the Allegory of the Cave that we read in the beginning of the year.  The prisoners are tied up in the cave and have no idea there is an outside world.  One of the prisoners is eventually released and shown the outside world kind of like Candide leaves Eldorado in Candide.  Even though Eldorado is much more glamorous the being trapped in a cave, I think the ideas between Eldorado and the Allegory of the Cave do parallel.  People should not always rely on their senses because life might be much different then what you think it is.


Michell D said...

I think that the ideas are parallel, but i wholeheartedly disagree that they are the same thing. its like the lines y=2x+20 and y= 2x-32, sure they are parallel, but they are really far apart. I think the people here are almost like the forms instead of those sheltered in the caves. Eldorado has found the secret formula for an entirely happy society, and I think that they should rely on their senses because they are living the high life every day, they don't need to experience the horros of the outside world to appreciate what they have. The people in the cave have no idea what is going on, but I think the people of Eldorado are more enlightened and actually have a grasp on the world around them.

Madeline Davis said...

I agree with Austin on the parallels and I agree with Mitchell that the two scenarios are entirely different, but I don't agree that the people in Eldorado found the "secret recipe" for an entirely happy society. It seems to me that because Eldorado didn't have hardships, its perfection and happiness was undermined. Because they had no bad times to compare the good times too, the society seems very one-dimensional. In my opinion, the people in Eldorado can't have a full grasp on the world around them because they've isolated themselves form the world around them.

I do appreciate Mitchell's math comparison, though.

Ben Bonner said...

One key difference between the two is their relationship with the outside world. The people of Eldorado are aware of the outside world, they even have inns supported by the state to promote commerce, they just don't have contact with it, with the exception of Candide. In spite of the fact that the people of Eldorado are aware of the outside world, they choose to remain introverted as a society. Voltaire and Plato therefore seem to be suggesting opposite solutions: Plato - to leave the cave; and Voltaire - to stay in the cave. I think it's really interesting that the two of them seem to have opposite solutions to the human condition; it harkens back to the debate we had earlier in the year about whether or not to take the chance to live out the rest of one's life in a machine.