Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.


August 2012

Did Ip Man Invent the Story of Yim Wing Chun?

Many of the debates in the Wing Chun world today focus on the question of lineage.  People want to know which expression of Wing Chun best captures its essential essence?  Which is truly “authentic”?  Often it is assumed that authenticity... Continue Reading →

What can Morihei Ueshiba teach us about researching Chinese martial culture?

I have a long standing interest in the biographies of martial artists and am constantly amazed to see the different ways in which these practices are manifest in an individual’s life.  It is also the case that their stories are... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly (2): Images of the Boxer Uprising

One of my projects for the next couple of weeks is to revise a conference paper I wrote a few years ago and submit it to a journal.  I have been meaning to get to this one for a while... Continue Reading →

Traditional Training Equipment in the Chinese Martial Arts (Part II): Attack of the Wooden Dummies!

One of the most iconic images in the annals of Kung Fu training is that of the lone student, lost in the zen-like practice of his wooden dummy routine.  Dummies of various sorts and sizes have a long history in... Continue Reading →

Traditional Training Equipment in the Chinese Martial Arts (Part I): Legacy of the Long Pole.

Defining Your Space In addition to researching the martial arts, I also practice Wing Chun (Ip Man/Ip Ching lineage for those who are interested).  I recently started to teach a couple of people and things have been going well enough... Continue Reading →

Chinese Martial Arts in the News, August 20, 2012: The Steampunk Edition

  It is time for another quick roundup of news articles dealing with the Chinese martial arts, and martial studies more generally.  This week there a clear theme emerged as I was looking at the news, steampunk!  I know right,... Continue Reading →

How “Common Sense” Warps our Perceptions of Wing Chun and its Origins.

We have an issue in the field of Chinese martial studies, and it tends to be more concentrated in the historical arguments.  Our problem is “common sense.”  It seems that in our discussions what “everyone says” quickly becomes “what no... Continue Reading →

Reevaluating Jingwu: Would Bruce Lee have existed without it?

Jingwu (sometimes romanized as Chinwoo) is one of the greatest movements to emerge in the modern (post-1850) history of the traditional Chinese martial arts.  Casual observers will likely be aware of at least the broad outlines of the organization’s foundation... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly: Images of China’s Martial Culture (1)

This is the first entry in what I hope will be a periodic series where we examine and discuss period ephemera (1850-1970) relating to Chinese martial studies.  Ephemera is very interesting to me as it is closely tied to questions... Continue Reading →

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