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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Chinese Martial Studies

Knight Errantry and the Soaring Sky

  For ten years I have been polishing this sword; Its frosty edge has never been put to the test. Now I am holding it and showing it to you, sir: Is there anyone suffering from injustice? The Swordsman (剑客) by Jia... Continue Reading →

Earliest Published Photograph and References to Wing Chun

  The Problem with Being “First” I am distrustful of attempts to locate the “first” instance of anything popular or famous. Generally speaking, these quests misunderstand the way that the social world works. We all stand on the shoulders of... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly (66): The Dramatic Aspect of Chinese Martial Arts

  Introduction We must thank Joseph Svinth for this post. He came across the following photo essay during his research and was kind enough to share it with me. It was clear that this needed to be included in the... Continue Reading →

Lives of Chinese Martial Artists (24): Wen Shengcai, Wing Chun’s Assassin

  On Legends and their Grains Not all legends contain a grain a truth. Such an assertion is wishful thinking and sells short the remarkable faculty that is the human imagination. Still, grains manifest frequently enough that they keep historians... Continue Reading →

Epistemic Viciousness: Taking Martial Arts Seriously

  Martial Arts Studies blogging is a hard habit to break. No sooner had I resolved to step away from more academic questions and spend a few months writing about Wing Chun practice and history than I came across an... Continue Reading →

Research Note: General Ma Liang’s ‘New Wushu’ Comes to America (1924)

Introduction I am always on the look out for vintage newspaper accounts of Chinese martial arts for my database. While it takes some digging, it is not that difficult to get a sense of what is happening in the English... Continue Reading →

The Maiden of Yue and the Magnificent Chu

LK Chen's Magnificent Chu Jian. Source: LKChenswords.com   Rediscovering a Lost Sword Culture A single puzzle piece is useless on its own. Sometimes it takes one mystery to illuminate another.  Such is the case with the following text and sword.  Historians... Continue Reading →

Martial Arts and World Peace

Peace Park in Salt Lake City, UT. Source: Photo by Benjamin Judkins. Never let it be said that I was afraid to go big in a title. But in all seriousness, we need to talk about the international global order.... Continue Reading →

Research Note: China’s Red Spears

  The Significance of the Red Spears If one were to ask a group of history students what the most successful Chinese hand combat movement of the early 20thcentury was, my bet is that the conversation would turn into a... Continue Reading →

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