Response to Plato’s Republic Excerpt

1. In this work there are three representation s of a chair, but each does not perform the same function. The chair in the middle is the rendering of what a carpenter imagined a chair to look like.  The photograph of the chair shows its structure, but cannot function. It visually describes what could function as a chair. The definition of a chair describes the concept of what a chair should do but does not restrict the mind to only one type of chair but rather dictates the idea.  I believe there is one functioning chair in the exhibit but three representations of chairs.

2. I don’t think Plato would consider any of the chairs to be the “real chair”. This would because it is only one artist’s interpretation of a chair- their idea.  Plato would say the idea- the essence of a chair is the reality.  No individual has the power to create that idea. If the photograph was said to be a chair then is would be a false imitation because it cannot achieve the function of the idea.  The constructed chair is a part of the tangible world and can function as one but is did not create the meaning of a chair.

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