Tuesday, February 15, 2011

My Take on Gone With the Wind

My take on one of my favourite novels "Gone With the

Wind". This is the story told as briefly as possible , trying to keep the essence of a thousand page book within a few hundred words , writtern way back in 2004.
Just reading it again showed me how simplistically I see  these books and characters.Initially it was sent as four emails to my husband and some of my friends after I'd just finished reading the novel myself.Here it is with a few minor edits for typos.

Part 1:

The book is set in the times of American civil war.Scarlett is the eldest daughter of Gerald O'Hara (who was Irish and made his money in cotton plantations) and Ellen Robillard a really nice lady and and excellent house manager .

She is described as some one who has the power to get things done with out actually raising her voice.Their plantation is called 'Tara'.It has many slaves.There are women slaves who specialise in getting ladies ready and also field hands who work in the field.Almost all the neighbours live in much the similar way.

Scarlett is a very different character.Not what you'd expect of a Heroine.She is attractive with green eyes red hair and all .But she only understands tangible things like money and land.She really does a lot of things that are not quite right just to get her own way and make money.

Scarlett loves Ashley one of the people in her neighbourhood.But he marries his cousin Melanie.On the day of engagement of Ashley and Melanie she confronts ashley and he confesses that he loves her but that they will never be happy together coz they cannot understand each other.she slaps him.

Rhett butler Overhears this conversation.He already has a very bad reputation and every one in the country hates him.Scarlett is mad at him and hates him instantly for seeing her in that shameful sitaution.

Melanie is the other heroine like character in the book.She is full of goodness.She cannot even imagine an evil inention in another person.She loves Ashley dearly.

To spite everyone Scarlett marries Melanie's brother Charles.

Then the civil war happens.................

Part 2

In the war many people were killed and the south was defeated.Among the dead were Charles-scarlett's first husband.She bears a child which she totally ignores.She never really loved Charles and hates the time of widowhood coz she cannott do anything that she likes.The fact that she can never have Ashley gnaws at her.

Then she goes to live with Melanie and Charles ' aunt in Atlanta.Scarlett hates Melanie.But Melanie always misinterprets Scarlett's behavior with something heroic.Rhett Butler makes many cameo appearances and he is the one person who can read what's exactly on Scarlett's mind.He doesn't care about reputation and he has no scruples about making money when the confederate (southern states) are falling.

Then war comes to Atlanta too and everyone flees .But Scarlett and Melanie cannot leave because Melanie is pregnant.Though she curses Melanie a lot in private,she stays with her and helps her.Then they go back to Tara together.There everything is scarce and they have barely enough to live and pay taxes.They try to get money .Very unconventionally scarlett seduces a guy called Frank Kennedy who owns a store and marries him knowing perfectly well that her sister loved him as well.But here she really does give the money to every one in her family which her sister would never have done.
She lives as the wife of Frank kennedy and gives birth to a daughter.But She starts managing the store and also buys mills.She turns out to be an excellent business lady .But as ladies of her time are not supposed to be outside houses.Frank gets ridiculed by every one.He Ashley and many others join the Klu Klux Klan against blacks and Frank gets killed.

Rhett helps Ashley.Even now Scarlett loves Ashley.Rhett loves her.

Part 3

Rhett Butler was unpopular because he was thought to have made a lot of money from war .Also he was known to have funded a prostitute set up her house and he was quite ungallant unlike the usual southerners.

Scarlett is by far the most unpopular female in town and only Melanie really likes her.Rhett confronts her one day and offers to marry her fully knowing alll her faults also telling her that he has virtually no feelings of any kind towards her.But that since they understand each other's character so well , they should get married.

Again a marriage for Scarlett and Rhett gives her everything money can buy and also independence to live as she likes which is a way unnatural to other southern ladies.

Ashley has virtually no money and no job .So scarlett offers him a job at one of her mills.Even now she has Ashley on her mind and wishes that Melanie were dead.Melanie on the other hand adores Scarlett and Rhett and has no suspicions abt her.

Scarlett starts liking Rhett but not loving him.They have a daughter 'Bonnie' whom Rhett adores.Rhett mends his ways and becomes the most caring father that Atlanta has ever seen.All the townspeople start liking Rhett.

Then an incident involving Ashley and Melanie occurs at the mills and causes scandal in the town.Every one hates scarlett and the whole town is abuzz with rumours.But melanie refuses to believe any rumour abt scarlett and even stops talking to those who talk ill of her.Neither Ashley nor Scarlett tell her the truth because truth would be unbelievable to Melanie.

Rhett becomes quite cold to scarlett and leaves Atlanta.She starts understanding him .But she is too head strong to admit it to him.

Part 4

The day Rhett comes back ,Scarlett is really happy to see him and wants to tell him that she is going to have a child.But they have an argument at the end of which she falls down the fleet of grand stairs and is very ill.

It is at this point that we understand how much Rhett had loved scarlett.And Scarlett delirious can only think that Rhet hates her and she never once calls his name.Melanie is there full time to care for her as well as console Rhett.

After Scarlett recovers , She pays a visit to Tara and comes back rejuvenated.Bonnie grows very fond of jumping over fences on her pony .Rhett is a very indulgent father and lets her do everything she fancies.
Then one day Bonnie tries to make the pony jump a very large fence and she falls off the horse and dies instantaneously.Scarlett blames Rhett.Rhett is devastated.

Rhett gets drunk everyday and goes back to his old ways .He doesn't even acknowledge Scarlett's existence.Scarlett feels very lonely.Then one day Rhett telegrams her saying that Melanie is seriously ill.
She had not heeded doctor's advice abt not having a baby and now was on her deathbed.

Melanie says she wants to speak to scarlett .She tells scarlett to look after Ashley and her kid.Scarlett suddenly realises how much Melanie meant to her and that her foolish love for Ashley evaporates away in a flash..

As she rushes back to her home thru the mist to tell Rhett that she loves him and that she wants him .But he calmly says that it is too late -his love for her has worn out and that he is abt to go on a long voyage.....

Scarlett is left all alone.But with charecteristic grit she says 'I'll think of some way to get him back'.'After all tomorrow is another day'.

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