any superstition that may have been mentioned or stated.
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Here as elsewhere, Achebe's digression into the rituals and celebrations of the Igbo in some way echo what is going on in the central story of the novel. In addition to fleshing out Achebe's portrait of Igbo life, the parallels here between ceremony and central action are strong. The ceremony welcoming the new bride is dominated by the women: it is the husband's sisters who subject the new bride to scrutiny, with the eldest sister taking on a protective role for her brother. Not coincidentally, Uchendu's lecture centers on the important role of a mother and maternal blood lines. Okonkwo, so proud of manhood and obsessed with masculinity, is being asked to accept a mother's comfort. He is also asked by Uchendu to be a source of tenderness and comfort to his wives; Okonkwo has always associated such behavior with weakness. Uchendu is reminding his nephew that strength is not synonymous with force and violence. He is also reminding Okonkwo that strength is not a uniquely male domain.