Narrator and point of view

The novella The Embassy of Cambodia by Zadie Smith is told from the point of view of a first-person narrator

The narrator is a representative of the residents of Willesden, as shown by the repetition of the phrase “we, the people of Willesden”. The narrator often uses the first-person plural pronouns “we” or “us” to show that they are acting as a spokesperson for the people of Willesden: “I have been chosen to speak for them”.

The narrator acts as an observer of the story and often offers commentary on Fatou’s actions or the happenings in Willesden without being involved in the events. For example, after Fatou notices the Cambodian woman at the embassy, in Chapter 0-9, the narrator interrupts the narrative for a commentary: 

No doubt there are those who will be critical of the na...

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