Given that today is “Cyber Monday,” one of the largest on-line shopping days of the year, it is only fitting that I give something away. A reader recently informed me that the State University of New York Press has posted most of the first chapter of my book, The Creation of Wing Chun: A Social History of the Southern Chinese Martial Arts, as a PDF to their webpage. As such this seems like the perfect time to share that text with my readers here at Kung Fu Tea. You can find it by clicking this link.
I actually thought that it was a bit odd that they decided to convert Chapter 1, titled “Growth and Disorder: Paradoxes of the Qing Dynasty,” into a sample PDF. This section of the text attempts to provide readers with the basic historical and conceptual tools to make sense of the later case studies (though there is some good information in there for martial artists to be aware of). If SUNY had asked my advice (which they did not) I would have told them to post my Introduction instead. Not only does it outline the project, but many readers might find its literature review to be really helpful. In this case it looks like they decided to jump right into the “meat” of the text instead.
If, after reading this chapter, you decide that you want to hear more directly how I discuss Wing Chun, you can check out the following conference paper, which summarizes the book’s conclusion. You can also find Douglas Wile’s recent discussion of my book here. Or you could just head on over to Amazon and order either a hardback copy for your library or the electronic version (at a notable discount) to read on your Kindle. And if you still need something to ponder while waiting for you acquisition to arrive, try checking out this recent essay which asks whether the world still needs the memory of Bruce Lee? Enjoy!