The main character of George Orwell's short story "Shooting an elephant" is the narrator.  He is not named, which might be because he is meant to represent any British officer working in the British colonies. He is influenced and shaped by the action in the story – as we see him killing an elephant under the pressure of the crowd, despite his judgement telling him otherwise. The narrator comes across as a conflicted character.

The other characters that appear in the story are not important individually, but as the collective character of the locals with whom the narrator interacts. They are seen through the eyes of the narrator, and their thoughts and feelings are interpreted by him. As they do not change over the course of the story, they can be considered a flat character.

Other British colleagues are mentioned as well.