Racial discrimination and inequality between races have been a significant part of American society for centuries. Even today we still find racial disparitiesnot only in America but everywhere in the world.
The writer Joy Boothe who has written this short story called “Jesse” very well takes us on a journey about growing up in a society where racial inequality is a norm.
After the death of the protagonist’s parents, she moves in with her grandmother. At this point in the story, we get the impression of her not caring anymore about what the grandmother thinks and expects of her “I want to cry, to hug him, to have him put me up on his shoulders.
“There are other people around, so all I can say is, “Hey, Jesse.” (P.4 L.135)even though she, at this point has been living with her grandmother for a while.
It does not hold her back from talking to Jesse. But she is still holding herself back a little because she knows that it is not well received for a white girl to be talking to a black man.
As introducedat the beginning of the characteristic of the protagonist she ends up becoming an independent woman with her own opinions.
“I’ll name it Rita if it’s a girl, and Jesse if it’s a boy,” I answer.” (P.4 L.134). When she tells her grandmother, that she will name her child “Jesse” if it is a boy clearly tells us that she finally has let go of her grandmothers’ prejudices.