It is clear to see that the character Rhett Butler in Gone with the Wind precisely symbolizes the main chacteristics of American. In the conversation with Scarlett, he responds her suspicion of his politic intention that “Not a change of heart at all. Merely a change of hide. You might possibly sponge the spots off a leopard but he’d remain a leopard, just the same. ” Through this saying, the personalities of Rhett Butler in particularity, as well as of American people in generality, are partially revealed. Through several incidents in the story, Rhett Butler appears to be a scandalous, oppotunicstic and self-aware person.
He goes after what he desires and dare to do everything to achieve them, regardless of the popular scandales. In other words, to reach his target, he is willing to adopt a sensible “hide”, which is flexible with the changes of potential prospect, but never “change of heart”, or suspects his definite target of possessing powers. Specifically, although several Southerners view Rhett Butler as a traitor, or “scallawag” for his willingness to work with Northern reformers to make Reconstruction happen, he hardly bothers public shame on account of foreseeing the potential to earn money.
Futhermore, being able to capture the turning signals of prospect wind, he quickly quit from being a Scallawag and recognize by himself as “a humble Democrat”, who is “in good standing, devoted to the last drop of blood to recovering our beloved state from the hands of her ravishers”. In this way, Rhett Butler shows his desire for money and practical willingness to do what he can to advance himself in any situation. Looking back on the history of America, it is easy to realize this realistically oppotunistic behavior on the government policies in World War I.
As Rhett Butler foresees the wining potential of Democracy party, America, after 3 years staying neutral between the Allies and the Central Powers to earn profits from weapons sales, entered the war with the Allies at their sucessful time of various offensives. In conclusion, without doubt, these words of Rhett Butler not only depict his personalities but the American outstanding features of daring, desperateness and ambitiousness as well.