The story ‘Let Them Call It Jazz’ is written by Jean Rays and it talks about Salina, a dark skinned, young woman who has no money, no home and no idea of what to do next in her life. She came to England with the intent of becoming a seamstress at a shop in London, but has had no luck getting hired. Instead she finds herself kicked out of the bed-sit she rents weekly and learns that her life savings has been stolen.
Jean Rays has used specific characterization techniques to convey certain attitudes toward racial oppression. Her narration and dialogue, her personality and the other characters reaction to her are integral in communicating the racism message in the story to the reader. Jean Rays was influenced by her own experience with the whites and wanted to speak out about the racist acts by the people of England.
The other character’s reaction is shown when she moved into a ewe flat, she was disliked instantly and was told by her neighbors “Must you stay? Can’t you go? ‘ this shows that the people of that age then disliked people who were not white and did not treat them properly.
Her previous land lady, not only stole Saline’s money, but also lied to the police when Salina reported that her money was stolen, saying “She certainly had no money when she came here, She able to pay a month ‘s rent in advance for her room”.
This caused Salina to leave the flat to find another one. Racism through the reaction of other characters is further shown when Salina was singing on her own and the neighbors disliked it. They called the police and when she was being told off my the police,” You can’t make that noise here. Get along home. You’ve been drinking. I’, the woman who had called the police was “looking at me and smiling” and the “other people at their windows” this proves that racism was dominant during that time.