Outer characterization

Fatou is the main character of The Embassy of Cambodia by Zadie Smith. She is a woman from the Ivory Coast who immigrated to the United Kingdom. She lives in Willesden in the house of her employers, the Derawal family, for whom she works as a housekeeper.

Inner characterization

Fatou is trapped and has no personal freedoms

Fatou is mostly characterized by her lack of independence. She lives in the Derawals’ house and only goes out to buy groceries for them or to meet with her church friend, Andrew. The Derawals have taken away Fatou’s passport, and they do not pay her for her work as they believe her wages go towards her rent and food. Fatou is, therefore, trapped in an unfair situation: 

She had not seen her passport with her ow...

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