Physical setting

The events described in the short story “Cell One” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie take place in Nigeria, in the town of Nsukka, Enugu State

Part of the events takes place on the Nsukka university campus, where the narrator and her family live. The family house is described during the fake robbery episode: “It took me a moment to take in the room. Even then, I felt that there was a theatrical quality to the way the drawers had been flung open”. The narrator claims that her “mother’s jewelry was the only thing of any value in the house: a lifetime’s accumulation of solid-gold pieces”. This hints that, although the family has a high social status, they might not be exactly wealthy.

The Nsukka campus is described when the narrator talks about the development of cults. She mentions parties – “the tame ones on campus and the wilder ones in town” – and the shooting at the Faculty of Engineering:

It was noon. I was in a class nearby...

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