Transforming Misogyny into Delusional Heroic Narratives in Taxi Driver and “Porphyria’s Lover”

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Sitting in a XXX theater, Travis plays out a murderous fantasy he would later fulfill in Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver. Sitting in a XXX theater, Travis plays out a murderous fantasy he would later fulfill in Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver.

“Now I see this clearly. My whole life is pointed in one direction. There never has been a choice for me.”–Travis Bickle

“No pain felt she;/I am sure she felt no pain.”–Porphyria’s lover

In both Robert Browning’s “Porphyria’s Lover” and Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver, a mysterious, delusional, passive man decides that he must resort to violence in order to make himself an active participant where before he was a passive observer. While Porphyria’s lover strangles Porphyria in order to still time at a point where he thinks he has what he is terrified to lose, Travis Bickle in Taxi Driver decides to rescue a woman similar to Porphyria, the 12-year-old prostitute Iris, from her pimp. Although the circumstances differ, both of these men attempt in some way to possess or…

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