The Madwoman in the Attic Questions and Answers
by Sandra Ellen Mortola, Susan Gubar

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Examine briefly the issue implied in the parables of the cave.

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In the relevant chapter of The Madwoman in the Attic, "The Parables of the Cave," Gilbert and Gubar put forward an explicitly feminist interpretation of Plato's parable of the cave as set out in Republic.

In the original parable, men are chained inside the cave so that they never see each other or anyone else. They can only see the shadows of other people on the walls of the cave, which they mistake for the actual people themselves. Plato argues that this is an allegory for how most people—i.e. not philosophers—see the...

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