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Scarlett O'Hara - Gone With the Wind

Updated on January 7, 2013

Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell

Do you have a favourite fictional character from a book? Mine is Scarlett O'Hara from Margaret Mitchell's Gone WIth the Wind. Unusually for me, I saw this as a movie before I read the book. I fell in love with Scarlett in the movie and then even more so when I read the book.

The book was written in 1936 but is still a wonderful read. Katie Scarlett O'Hara is a sixteen-year-old southern belle when the novel begins, and it follows her story as her life is turned upside down by the American Civil War and she loses some friends and family and goes through three marriages.

Scarlett's Personality

At the start of the novel the young Katie Scarlett, or Scarlett as everyone but her father calls her. is a pretty girl who loves to flirt and is fairly vain and self-centred in comparison to her sisters. She is pretty, charming and smart, and has the boys from neighboring plantations wrapped around her little finger and eager to wait on her hand and foot. She is attracted to her older neighbor Ashley Wilkes and would like to marry him, although the family tradition is to marry a cousin. At a barbecue social gathering she lets him know of her feelings in the library and he tells her he is going to wed somebody else.

After Ashley leaves the library Scarlett is mortified to find they weren't alone in there, and meets Rhett Butler for the first time. He is attracted to the feisty young woman and the story brings them together many times until he eventually becomes her third husband. Scarlett marries her sister's beau just before he goes off to war, mainly because she wants to show Ashley she doesn't care about him. She is quite manipulating but also very strong and focused on what she wants.

The Civil War comes to destroy everything she knows and she almost loses her home but makes her sisters work in the fields with her to bring in the cotton crop so they can continue to keep their plantation, Tara. She becomes a hard-nosed businesswoman and is willing to lie and connive to get her own way, but still keeps her love of the land and her home Tara. It takes her many years to realize she never really loved Ashley, but has loved Rhett for some time, but by then he has given up on her ever changing.

The book was made into a movie where Vivien Leigh played Scarlett and Clark Gable played Rhett. If you like the movie you will love the book - but don't bother to read the sequel that was written by another writer as you will be disappointed.

Scarlett's first meeting with Rhett Butler

Gone With the Wind Books

Scarlett vows to never be hungry again

Looking for more Scarlett O'Hara items? - Check these out or browse using the search box!

What do you think about Scarlett O'Hara? - Was she a memorable character? Did you like her?

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    • ComfortsOfHome profile image


      6 years ago

      I don't much like Scarlett (spoiled brat) but I do love the book. And even if I don't personally like Scarlett, she is such a well-drawn character that I find myself cheering for her to come through adversity and out the other side as a better, less self-absorbed person. Brilliant book.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Haven't read the book, but disliked the character in the movie. It is a classic, though not one of my favourites.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Thanks for this lens :P

    • tedwritesstuff24 profile image


      6 years ago

      Frankly my dear ;-)

    • DeborahDian profile image

      Deborah Carr 

      6 years ago from Orange County, California

      Oh my goodness! "Gone with the Wind" is one of my all-time favorite novels, and I am so glad that you wrote a review. Absolutely delightful! I didn't always like Scarlett O'Hara, but I could always sympathize with her attempts to control her situation in life.

    • CommanderNicole profile image


      6 years ago

      Gone With The Wind is such a great classic. I love both book & movie. Great lens.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 

      6 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      Yes, I've always thought Scarlett was a memorable character. Did I like her? Not really. She was a bit of spoiled brat, wasn't she? She did, however, have characteristics which allowed her to perservere. Those characteristics, and the historical setting in which Scarlett is placed, are what makes the book, and movie, so very riveting. Thank goodness, Margaret Mitchell had the tenecity to finish the book.

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 

      6 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      My cat, Scarlett O'Hairy, adores Scarlett.

    • choosehappy profile image


      6 years ago from US

      She's unforgettable ;) Nice job!

    • MrsNagrom profile image


      6 years ago

      I love Scarlett's Strength & Perseverance. She did what she had to do & didn't let circumstance dampen her spirits!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Thanks for sharing your review of the Scarlett O'Hara character.

    • WriterJanis2 profile image


      6 years ago

      She was definitely memorable.

    • paperfacets profile image

      Sherry Venegas 

      6 years ago from La Verne, CA

      I read this book when I was a teenager. I still have the edition my mother bought for me at Christmas.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image

      William Leverne Smith 

      6 years ago from Hollister, MO

      What fun - being the first SquidLike on a new lens! ;-)

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Scarlett is memorable, but I did not like her. I didn't like her mistreating Rhett or Ashley or the poor idiot she married just for revenge. She does grow in the novel, but I guess starting her as such a brat made it hard for me to forgive her. Melanie is also memorable.


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