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Accurate Perceptions On Race Relations And Gender Roles “Gone With The Wind”

1252 words - 6 pages

Mahmoud Mandour

Mrs. Kuhl

English Lang. and Lit.

25th February 2013


I chose to write a movie review, as a critic pointing out the inaccurate depictions made through characters in the movie, ‘Gone With The Wind”. What motivated me to do this, is that it is difficult to criticize movies as successful as this. So, I wrote this as a critic pointing out some huge flaws in the portrayals made through the movie’s characters, rather than focus on the story plot, like other movie reviews. The audience I target for this critique, is any “GWTW” fan that thinks this movie is flawless. This written task is intended to focus on part 1 of the course, as language in this movie ...view middle of the document...

A depiction of an indeed significant event in American history that focuses on a southern girl’s romantic life, leaving viewers with a warm feeling towards a great story that was beautifully told. An almost four hour screenplay interpretation of a novel that’s over 1000 pages, told in detail that matches every word in the book. In other words, the intriguing plot of the movie is undoubtedly succeeding in Hollywood. However, the controversial portrayal of some of the characters in the story are rather striking, and given the rapidly growing audience of the movie, shape inaccurate perceptions about gender roles, and race relations at the Confederate States during the American Civil War.

An issue clearly evident in this movie, is male attractiveness according to their wealth and social status. Throughout the whole movie, Rhett Butler, played by Clark Gable has several attempts in wooing Scarlett O'Hara, played by Vivien Leigh. All attempts fail and end negatively, except two. The first was successfully bidding $150 to dance with Scarlet. Up to that point, Scarlet had showed nothing but reluctance towards Mr. Butler. However, when he bids money for her, she suddenly expresses interest and excitement towards the character she rejected more than once. What makes money in this scene seem even more effective with women, is the fact that to everyone else in the scene, Scarlet was in a “mourning period’, over her husband’s death in the war. Therefore a woman changing her mind ever so quickly about a man, and heavily damaging her social image by dancing with a stranger during her mourning period, expresses the huge power that money had over women at the time. This same issue occurs again when Scarlet desperately makes a dress out of a curtain, to look pretty when asking Mr. butler for money at the jail he was imprisoned in. This scenario again showed how a woman went out of her way for a man’s money.

A second example is the positive reinforcement of male abusive and somewhat violent behaviors towards women. This is apparent the infamous scene in which Rhet Butler threatens Scarlet with violence, forcefully carries her to bed, and basically rapes her. Although Scarlett does fight back a bit in this segment, ultimately Rhett wins out, taking her against her will.  What I find the most disturbing, though, is that toward the end of the clip you can see Scarlett the next morning with a smile on her face thinking back on how she actually enjoyed the experience.  To me, this tells the audience it is alright to treat women this way because they...

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