Gone With The Wind – Week 2

The Civil War is still raging, but the Southern mindset is still on victory. Ever so slowly though, the Yankee army is pushing the Confederate soldiers back, farther into their own territory. Scarlett, Melanie, and Aunt Pittypat are safe in Atlanta for the time being. But with the soldiers coming closer and closer each day, Scarlett wonders just how safe they will be.

Rhett Butler is still a presence in Scarlett’s life, and she is intrigued and repulsed by him at the same time. How can a man be such a gentleman, and such a “cad” at the same time. Her passions are still burning for Ashley, but he is married to Melanie. While her husband is in the grave, Scarlett is bound by the time of mourning and what is deemed appropriate and inappropriate. While Scarlett spends her time at the hospital tending to the wounded and sick, she yearns to be home at Tara, with her family.

With the Yankee army moving closer to Atlanta, Melanie finally goes into labor. With the doctor unable to attend, she gives birth. Scarlett determines to go home to Tara, and sends for Rhett to help her get out safely. After they are out of the town, he leaves her to go off and join the army, much to her dismay. She is shocked and disgusted that he would leave them, women and children, so that he can run off and play soldier. She does her best to get them home, and is dismayed to find so many homes burned and nothing left of the world she left behind. At home she learns the awful truth, her sisters are recovering from typhoid fever, but her mother has passed. Her mother, the gentle. but firm hand which guided the plantation. As the full realization hits her, she realizes that she has a handful of things to manage, and quite a bit more to get finished. Her first move is to find food for the family, and to figure out who is still around.

While the war may be over, the Yankees are not fully gone. There is one buried under the corner of the house, and there is just the small nagging fear that, although a secret between only two, it may not be a secret forever. But what else can go wrong!?

This week we are reading Chapters 16-32

Questions:

  1. Scarlett and all the other women in Atlanta are sure that the war will be over soon, and are just as assured of a Confederate victory. Do you think they were unwilling to consider a loss? Do you think they would have done more to prepare if they had thought it a possibility?
  2. With the destination of Tara in mind, there is a single-mindedness that seems to be happening. Do you think they should have stayed where they were?
  3. With Ashley back at Tara and reunited with his wife, Scarlett again begins to think of the “could have beens.” Should she have just left things alone and been happy for her sister-in-law?

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