This tutorial is one more in a series that is all about concise summaries of the chapters in Faceless, a novel by Amma Darko. You will find the summary of Chapter Three of Faceless here.
I am about to give you the complete summary of Faceless Chapter Three.
Much of the detailed description that characterizes Amma Darko’s narrative style in Faceless can be found in Chapter Three of the novel.
Compared to ChapterTwo and Chapter Six, for example, Chapter Three of Faceless is quite a lengthy one. So you must expect a longer than usual chapter summary here.
Now you can have the your Chapter Three summary of Faceless.
Maa Tsuru’s realities
In Chapter Three of Faceless, we come face to face with the stark realities that prevail in Maa Tsuru’s life, and the atmosphere in the extended family compound house where she lives.
Maa Tsuru lives in a single room in an old family house in Accra. The origin of this house dates back to Ghana’s colonial era.
Odarley, a seasoned street girl, and bosom friend of Fofo’s (Maa Tsuru’s fourth child), has come to Maa Tsuru’s home, like John the Baptist. This girl arrives ahead of Fofo who is also on her way there. She tells Maa Tsuru Fofo is not sure about what to expect hence her reluctance to enter the house.
Fofo is coming to the house for the first time in almost a full year. This is despite the fact that her street home, Sodom and Gomorrah, is just a stone throw from there.
Why Fofo comes to see Maa Tsuru
She is on a mission to find answers to some questions bothering her mind. She has just survived Poison’s unsuccessful sexual assault on her.
Odarley meets a miserable Maa Tsuru living like an outcast in her own family home. She is treated like a leper by the other members of the household. The only exception is Naa Yomo, the 87-year-old grandmother and great-grandmother of all.
The people in the house will have nothing to do with Maa Tsuru nor with anyone who associates themeselves with her.
There are two main reasons accounting for this cold attitude others adopt towards Maa Tsuru. These are the supposed curse on Maa Tsuru’s head and the recent visit paid her by the villainous character called Poison, the Street Lord of Sodom and Gomorrah.
So Odarley meets with a very cold reception as she tries to greet a woman in the house. Odarley observes a dejected Maa Tsuru with a hungry-looking, emaciated child who is scrambling desperately to squeeze some milk from her haggard-looking breasts.
We can identify the theme of the street child phenomenon in Chapter Three of Faceless.
Amma Darko paints the picture very clearly in these lines:
“The weak grab of the loose and hanging breast. The searching mouth in the tiny lean face, the voracious draw on the tired wrinkled nipple, the spurt of energy from the enervated body that was clearly the anger from a little hungry child, and Odarley knew that the gurgling of Fofo’s half-brother was one of anguish. In process was the nurturing of another prospective soul into the devouring jaws of the street, a life brought forth for the sake of bringing forth …”
Maa Tsuru’s youngest child, a son, fathered by Kpakpo, is just one more candidate for the street.
Causes of the street child menace
Faceless Chapter Three thus reveals to us one major cause of streetism – poverty and hunger brought about by nothing more than unplanned procreation and absentee fathers.
It is also in Faceless Chapter Three that we come across Naa Yomo for the first time. She is the oldest member of Maa Tsuru’s household.
Naa Yomo demands a proper greeting from Odarley while the others shun the same. Naa Yomo is the only one who still retains an interest in Maa Tsuru and her children’s affairs. That is why she asks Odarley about Fofo’s whereabouts.
Odarley tells Maa Tsuru about Poison’s attempt to rape Fofo. This latest twist in her miserable life causes Maa Tsuru great pain.
The author describes in detail the relationship between Maa Tsuru and Fofo. And the main cause of this is a man called Nii Kpakpo.
Kpakpo has come to make life a living hell for a helpless Maa Tsuru and her children. Before Kpakpo, they were, at least, surviving. That was even after Kwei had abandoned them. But Kpakpo comes to destroy overnight the little happiness that is left.
This situation infuriates the young Fofo.
Fofo and Maa Tsuru
Fofo’s difficulty lies in the fact that she cannot easily comprehend how it is possible for Maa Tsuru to continue to have affection in her heart and a place in her single room for a loafer like Kpakpo.
Then Maa Tsuru tells Fofo about the death of her sister, Baby T. She also informs her about the subsequent visit Poison paid her earlier. Maa Tsuru asks Fofo to leave Accra, fearing Poison might try to harm her.
“Go somewhere far away from here where he can never find you.”
In Chapter Three of Faceless, Amma Darko portrays Fofo as both a child and an adult – depending on the circumstances she finds herself in at any particular moment.
The difficult experiences of street life have made her so. That is why Fofo can speak to her mother with an air of authority incompatible with her age of 14 years.
Fofo rebukes Maa Tsuru as if she were the older of the pair. She blames Maa Tsuru’s disastrous choices with regards to Kpakpo for the sufferings they are going through.
We learn in Chapter Three that Kpakpo disappeared one day without a warning.
Fofo picks a number of items from Kpakpo’s abandoned plastic bag and leaves.
These are the items she will later use to disguise herself as a boy in her attempt to rob Kabria at the Agbogbloshie market.
In Faceless Chapter Three ends as Fofo abruptly parts ways with a stunned Odarley.
Fofo will not say exactly where she is headed. Neither does she say anything about when she will rejoin her friend.