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Martial Arts History, Without Chronology

      Your mission, should choose to accept it…   Recently I have been invited to contribute chapters to a number of upcoming projects.  I am still attempting to decide what some of these should be, but in two cases the editors of the volumes in question have approached me with specific requests.  For … Continue reading

Chinese Martial Arts in the News: April 25th, 2016: Tourism, Weapons Based MMA and Old School Kung Fu

Introduction Welcome to “Chinese Martial Arts in the News.”  This is a semi-regular feature here at Kung Fu Tea in which we review media stories that mention or affect the traditional fighting arts.  In addition to discussing important events, this column also considers how the Asian hand combat systems are portrayed in the mainstream media. … Continue reading

Star Wars: An American Martial Arts Film Franchise?

      “When there is a fake—hippopotamus, dinosaur, sea serpent—it is not so much because it would not be possible to have the real equivalent, but because the public is meant to admire the perfection of the fake and its obedience to the program.  In this sense Disneyland not only produces illusions, but—in confessing … Continue reading

Research Notes: The Chinese and Japanese Martial Arts as Seen on Western Newsreels

    “In the west, Asian martial arts are everywhere.  They are part of the texture of popular consciousness.  Nonetheless I want to argue that they remain marginal.  That is to say, although Westerners may see them often, and all over the place, they are not simply the norm.” -Paul Bowman, “the Marginal Movement of … Continue reading

It is a bad idea to fall in love in a Kung Fu story. Honestly.

  Kung Fu and the Marriage Market Love and Kung Fu simply do not mix.  At least that is the strongly implied message to be found on the pages (and silver screens) of many traditional Chinese martial arts stories.  Things are different in the West.  In America audiences cheered when Daniel LaRusso walks away with … Continue reading

Thinking About Failure in the Martial Arts

  The Meaning of a Bruised Elbow   I have been working on a couple of projects that have taken me away from blogging in recent days.  These are the sorts of commitments that should bear fruit for the readers of Kung Fu Tea down the road, but in the mean time they are making … Continue reading

Conference Report: Kung Fury – Contemporary Debates in Martial Arts Cinema

Introduction   A few months ago I decided to make a more concerted effort to report on academic conferences and seminars happening within the field of martial arts studies.  My hope is to promote greater awareness of current discussions within our growing research community.  Readers interested in following these trends might want to begin by … Continue reading

Chinese Martial Arts in the News: April 4th, 2016: Taijiquan, Shaolin and New Books

  Introduction   Welcome to “Chinese Martial Arts in the News.”  This is a semi-regular feature here at Kung Fu Tea in which we review media stories that mention or affect the traditional fighting arts.  In addition to discussing important events, this column also considers how the Asian hand combat systems are portrayed in the … Continue reading

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