1 : a canal in a female mammal that leads from the uterus to the external orifice of the genital canal 2 : a canal that is similar in function or location to the vagina and occurs in various animals other than mammals
Well, there you have it. Irigaray attempts to represent the cave in Plato's allegory of the cave as one of these. Men are invisibly chained to this canal and they orient themselves in only one direction, or aim, which is towards the back of the cave, thus continuously plunging into darkness and ignorance. The fire inside the vagina-cave gives the ever-ignorant men a false sense of reality and awareness, and they are too far inside to realize their light, the fire, is only a man-made representation of the sun, truth, and beauty, so they stay in the vagina all their lives.
This reading was gibberish to me. I apologize for my lack of academic contribution.