Porphyria’s Lover by Robert Browning Essay

Porphyria’s Lover by Robert Browning Essay

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Everyone has a deviant side to them. Sigmund Freud explains there are three parts to the mind: the id, ego, and superego. The ego is the conscious, the superego is the conscience and the id is the deviance in people. By using Sigmund Freud’s method of psychology while reading “Porphyria’s Lover” by Robert Browning, you see how someone who cannot control their id acts. In this poem, Browning uses setting, symbolism and irony to portray that the id takes over the super ego.
The settings in this poem reflect the two strongest emotions of the characters: passion, and violence. “The sullen wind was soon awake,” the wind represents violence (2). Wind blows things around and destroys things and in this poem the violence is the speaker strangling Porphyria. “…and all the cottage warm,” the warmth reflects passion (9). The cottage was warm and warmth is associated with passion because passion creates heat. Porphyria and her lover are passionate about each other. These emotions are more powerful and more closely associated to the id which is eventually why the id takes over the superego.
Porphyria’s Lover takes place on a stormy and windy night. The weather is an example of foreshadowing. This is a literary device poems and stories use when something bad is going to happen. Despite the weather Porphyria comes to her lover showing she would rather be with him then with her family. Going to her lover without her family knowing is an example of her id yearning to free her from the constraints of her family and her supere.
The poem “Porphyria's Lover” is a dramatic monologue spoken in first person from the perspective of the narrator. By choosing this style of narration Browning can portray how human psychology, specifically the consciousness...


... middle of paper ...


...ossible for his superego to gain back control.
In this poem “Porphyria’s Lover” by Robert browning you see a man who seems perfectly normal turn into an insane man in a poem about murder. Porphyria comes to her lover to have a good night with her loved one, but in a horrible way she loses her life. With setting, irony and symbolism you see clearly how the superego was taken over by the id. Porphyria’s biggest weakness turns out to be her locks of “love.”






















Works cited
Browning, Robert. “Porphyria’s Lover.” Portable Literature: Reading, Reacting, writing. Ed
Laurie Kirzner and Stephen Mandell. Boston: wadworth. 2013 446-447. Print.
Freud, Sigmund. “TheEgo and the Id” The Standard Edition of the complete Psychological
works of Sigmund Freud. Ed James Stachey. Trans. James Strac hey. London: Hogarth press, 1961. 1-19. Print.


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