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Saturday, July 30, 2011
Scarlett O'Hara: The Unlikeable Likeable Heroine
And yet we love her. Why? Maybe because of her pluck and determination…that ‘God is my Witness’ speech, her ability to rise like a phoenix from the ashes of war and survive, even thrive. And in the end she does learn a brutal lesson and is willing to try to change. Isn’t that all we can ever expect from a character in a story?
The author Maeve Binchy says that men like information about how things work. They like excitement in stories, not a lot of emotion, hot heroes and heroines, shorter books, and don’t like long conversations about families and love affairs. While I do like exciting stories and hot heroes and heroines, I am also bored by too much conversation but hate descriptions of how things work, so I disagree with her a little. However, she also says women like to know why someone succeeds or fails, how to get someone back who’s stopped loving you and stories about juggling work and home. All of these things pertain to our love for Scarlett and I think explain why we enjoy watching her difficult character journey more than men. How many men do you know that have ever mentioned how much they loved “Gone with the Wind?”
Who are some of your favorite unlikeable likeable characters?
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