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Although their society is patriarchal, Uchendu points out that when a child is beaten by its father, it returns to its mother for comfort. In the same way, Okonkwo, exiled by his fatherland, has taken refuge in his motherland.
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.