On the 44th Anniversary of Bruce Lee’s Death: Cult (Film) Icon

      Introduction My original plan for the day included writing a conference report on the recent Martial Arts Studies gathering at Cardiff University (which, as always, was a blast).  However, when I opened my email this morning I found a note from Paul Bowman reminding me that today is the 44th anniversary of…

An Opportunity to Document the Indian Martial Arts

    Introduction   Prof. Phillip Zarrilli’s  name will already be familiar to many.  His book, When the Body Becomes All Eyes: Paradigms, Discourses and Practices of Power in Kalarippayattu, a South Indian Martial Art (Oxford UP, 2000) was an important landmark in the development of Martial Arts Studies.  It provided readers with both the first…

Bartitsu and Suffragette Jujitsu of the Early 20th Century

      Introduction   Greetings!  I am traveling for a conference and workshop where I will attempt to convince a group of political scientists that they should pay attention to Martial Arts Studies. (If you would like to see my presentation click here).  As such, I have arranged something special for Kung Fu Tea…

Traditional Chinese Martial Arts and the “YMCA Consensus”

      ***I am very excited to introduce the following guest post by my friend Scott Phillips.  In this essay Scott draws on his extensive study of modern Chinese religious and social history in an attempt to develop a powerful new concept for describing and theorizing the massive reforms of the Chinese martial arts…

Doing Research (10): Trying to Think Inside the Box with Paul Bowman

    Introduction   Welcome to the tenth entry in our series of guest posts titled “Doing Research.”  If you missed the first essay by D. S. Farrer (which provides a global overview of the subject), the second by Daniel Mroz (how to select a school or teacher for research purposes), the third by  Jared Miracle…

Taoism in Bits

“Taoism in Bits.” A guest post by Paul Bowman [1] ***Xīnnián hǎo.  We are fortunate to have a special guest post this week in honor of the Chinese New Year.  This essay, by Prof. Paul Bowman, will help us to think more systematically about the process by which elements of Chinese culture (specifically Daoism and…

Why do you draw the line? More on Definition in Martial Arts Studies

  ***Paul Bowman recently wrote an essay dealing with attempts to both define the martial arts and to think about the development of martial arts studies as a distinct field.  Given the importance of the points that he raises, and the amount of interest that they are likely to generate among readers of Kung Fu…

(Insanity and) the Arts of Martial Minds

  ***Today we have a fascinating guest post by Paul Bowman.   It has been reblogged from Martial Arts Studies.  This essay outlines a new research project looking at questions of sanity and insanity within the practice of martial arts.  It is one of the most thought provoking things that I have read in a while. …