Gone with the Wind – Divorce Diva Classics

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Love her, or hate her, Scarlett O’Hara is the quintessence of clout pout.  She was married three times, survived the Civil War, the death of a child, and kept Tara from going up in flames.  Scarlett may be a fictional character, but if she were real and alive today, she’d have a line of corsets and curtains available at finer department stores.

Try saying to yourself, “I can’t think about that (fill in the that) right now.  If I do, I’ll go crazy.  I’ll think about that tomorrow.”  It worked for her.  It may just work for you. Scarlett may have been a back stabbing, man-stealing harlot, but she had a vision and nothing and nobody was going to stop her from achieving what she obviously felt was her God-given right.  She wasn’t malicious, just misunderstood.  The same might be said of the actress who became famous playing her and the writer who created her.

Margaret Mitchell:  author – born November 8, 1900

The author of the Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Gone with the Wind, was married twice, run over by a car once and died at the age of forty-nine.

Her life wasn’t quite like that of her heroine, Scarlett O’Hara, but there are some similarities.  Both were raised in a white mansion in segregated Atlanta.  Since slavery was out, Mitchell had to make do with servants.

By age seventeen, Margaret was engaged to a soldier who was killed in action.  Several years after she graduated from college, she was courted by two suitors: Red Upshaw and John Marsh.

She married Rhett, I mean Red, who turned out to be an abusive alcoholic bootlegger and all-round scoundrel.  They get divorced, and waiting in the wings, was bachelor No. 2 John March.  They married on July 4, 1925.

We readers owe a debt of gratitude to arthritis as it was this affliction that confined the budding journalist to her bed, where she read and read until, it is said, the public library had to retire her card.  What’s a reader to do?  Write!

Gone with the Wind was published in 1936 and sold more than one million copies in about four months.  Soon after, Hollywood came a calling and every actress in Hollywood wanted to play Scarlett O’Hara.

Vivien Leigh: actress – born November 5, 1913

Around the time Mrs. Leigh was reading Gone with the Wind, she was earning her own Scarlet letter by engaging in an extramarital affair with the also married Laurence Olivier.  The British-born actors would eventually divorce their respective spouses and marry and divorce each other.

Vivien Leigh won two Academy Awards playing Southern belles: Scarlett O’Hara in Gone with the Wind and Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire. 

She also suffered in silence with manic depression (bipolar).

Her erratic behavior earned her the reputation of being difficult to work with and made for a rocky marriage to Olivier.

 

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