Study Guide

Gone With the Wind Chapter 9

By Margaret Mitchell

Chapter 9

  • Scarlett is upset that she's missing a party, and starts crying about it.
  • Pittypat and Melly think she's crying for Charlie, though of course she doesn't care about Charlie at all.
  • Basically Scarlett's whole life and everything she says and does is a lie. That doesn't seem like it can turn out well.
  • Mrs. Merriwether and Mrs. Elsing come and say that Scarlett and Melanie are needed to help at the party for the soldiers even though they're in mourning.
  • Scarlett pretends it's a sacrifice to go out, and Melanie agrees to come along.
  • They go to the party and Scarlett is happy, though she still wishes she could dance.
  • She suddenly realizes she doesn't actually care about the Southern Cause at all; instead she's jealous that she's a widow and isn't allowed to go out and dance and flirt.
  • She's still only seventeen, remember.
  • Eventually Rhett comes in and sees her and realizes she wants to dance. He looks at her boldly, because he's that kind of romantic hero.
  • Rhett seems to admire Melanie's courage in suffering while her husband is away; he knows Scarlett didn't love her husband, and teases her about it obliquely.
  • Dr. Meade gets up and asks the women of the Confederacy to give away their jewelry to sell to raise money for the troops.
  • Scarlett gives away her wedding ring because she doesn't care about Charles anyway, and Melanie gives away hers because she is so brave.
  • More bantering from Rhett to show how truthful and unconventional and attractively unprincipled he is.
  • He is a blockade runner, which means people think he's bravely dodging Yankees, but mostly he just bribes folks.
  • Dr. Meade scandalously arranges an auction for dancers so that the men will bid and give money to the Confederacy.
  • Rhett bargains for Scarlett, so she gets to dance; everyone thinks she's brave and doing it to get money for the Confederacy, but she just wants to dance.
  • People are still scandalized.