In Irigaray's Speculum of the Other Woman, she takes Plato's Cave and puts a brand new lens over it. Here the cave is meant to be seen as two things: on the one hand she depicts it as a replica of the world we live in, an artificial world. Irigaray quotes, "For if the cave is made in the image of the world, the word -- as we shall see -- is equally made in the image of the cave. In cave or "world" all is but the image of an image" (246). I feel like this is an important point because what does this say of the world in which we live in today? Perhaps the way in which we see the world is not necessarily by our own choosing, and if it isn't, how would we know?
On the other hand, and most importantly, she describes the cave as being compared to a woman's womb. Irigaray describes it as the "original/matrix womb" (244) which also lends itself back to the idea of an artificial world. In essance, she describes the cave where the men are chained womb-like, and only barely separated from the neck of the cave (a phallic image) by a thin curtain (hymann) inwhich the light (a fake sun represented by fire) can produce shadow images against the back side of the wall. This interpretation of the cave is a very interesting, not to mention very fruedian way of expanding on Plato's Hystera.
2 years ago