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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

Author

benjudkins

THE POLITICS OF AN OLYMPIC MEDAL

Sajad Ganjzadeh of Iran, left, is injured while competing against Tareg Hamedi of Saudi Arabia. Introduction We are very pleased to host the following essay on Karate's appearance in the Tokyo Olympics by Prof. Stephen Chan. This is an important... Continue Reading →

Sometimes a Cigar is Just a Lightsaber: Fetishism and Material Culture in Martial Arts Studies

“The lightsaber has become an important touchstone, both within the films and within our culture…They serve as a source of identification and identity.  They are the ultimate commodity: a nonexistent object whose replicas sell for hundreds of dollars.  This is... Continue Reading →

Up Next – 50 Years After Bruce Lee

I know that everyone is looking forward to the upcoming Martial Arts Studies conference in Switzerland this summer, but it never too soon to start thinking about that next paper, chapter or plane ticket. This looks like it will be... Continue Reading →

Chinese Weapons and the Western Gaze

A Collection of Chinese Arms, Published in 1905, posted by Peter Dekker. Spring Cleaning I sat down this morning to work on a project looking at sword aficionados in China, their customers in the West, and how the relationship between... Continue Reading →

Towards a Political Hoplology: Violence and the Construction of Identity in Krav Maga

Andrea Molle. 2021. Krav Maga and the Making of Modern Israel: For Zion’s Sake. Rowman & Littlefield. 2022. $105 Hardcover, $38 Kindle. “There is also another function of violence, and it is to reduce uncertainty through promoting solidarity among individuals.  I call this... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly (67): Winter Training in Japanese Martial Arts

Group 1. Yonezawa Industrial School's Midwinter Training General Meeting. Winter Training In the "before times" some readers will remember that I ran a lightsaber combat club in Ithaca. To say that it was a lot of fun would be an... Continue Reading →

Berlin 1936: Chinese Martial Arts on a Global Stage

Introduction The Olympics are once again being hosted by China and the eyes of the world are on Beijing.  Martial arts don't really play any role in the Winter Games, but there seems to be more political discussion surrounding this... Continue Reading →

A Life in Stone: Images of Weapons During the Han Dynasty

Silent Riddles Our discussion of the origins of modern martial arts is always haunted by twin specters. The first is the claim of great, almost unimageable, antiquity.  The second is arguments from silence.  We have explored at length all of the cultural,... Continue Reading →

The Woyao Dao and Regionalism in History and Martial Studies

LK Chen's Woyao Dao. Source: LKChensword.com Introduction A package containing two of LK Chen’s fine historical reproductions recently arrived at my door. So, of course, I find myself thinking about the importance of “regionalism” within martial arts studies.  The connection between... Continue Reading →

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