Greg Garrett

Is Gone with the Wind to blame for Trumpism?

The Lost Cause – the theme of Margaret Mitchell’s bestseller – now seems a more potent American myth than ever, says Sarah Churchwell

Hattie McDaniel as Mammy, the Tara house slave, and Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara in a scene from the film Gone with the Wind. [Alamy]

‘America is merely a story the nation tells itself,’ the historian and cultural critic Sarah Churchwell writes in The Wrath to Come. Of the many American stories, few are more disturbing than the complex one represented by the rioter Kevin Seefried inside the Capitol on 6 January 2020. He carried the Confederate battle flag to a place it had never before been: the hall outside the United States Senate chamber.

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