Chapter 3 focuses in on a single detail of the surrounding riot: the events inside the beseiged hotel between the harbor and town. Captain Mitchell, our guiding voice, disappears, and is replaced by the hotel owner, Giorgio Viola, in whom we meet for the first time a character consumed by a single idea. Giorgio's passionate, explicitly religious devotion to Garibaldi and the cause of Liberty prefigures the powerful dream-ideals of Charles Gould, Don Jose Avallanos, and other main characters to come. The painting of Garibaldi on the wall is shown in a symbolic half-light that conveys the luminous attraction of the dream-ideal as well as its darker side, and indeed, at one point we see Giorgio turning to the painting, his devotion to the ideal rendering him oblivious to the fact that his wife has fainted.
The chapter sets a dramatic stage for the entrance of Nostromo. Giorgio and
Teresa, Nostromo's adopted parents, engage in a debate over his merits that
is allegorically a debate on the merits of the People. In so doing they give
hints as to their own allegorical roles in the novel.