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Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Martial Arts and Religion

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 →

“Jesus Didn’t Tap”: Sixt Wetzler and the Connection of Religion and Martial Arts

I fundamentally dislike to the term “myth busting.” It reminds me of an American television program that gained great popularity by deconstructing urban legends and popular wisdom through the excessive use of car crashes and C-4 explosives. I can’t actually... Continue Reading →

History of East Asian Martial Arts: Week 11 – Reinvention of Jujutsu (and the money taboo)

  Introduction Welcome to week eleven of “History of East Asian Martial Arts.”  This series follows the readings being used in Prof. TJ Hinrichs’ undergraduate course of the same name at Cornell University.  This is a great opportunity for readers... Continue Reading →

History of East Asian Martial Arts: Week 7 – Buddhism and Martial Arts

Introduction I have noticed a persistent tendency by some to strive to maintain an artificial barrier between the physicality of martial arts practice one the one hand, and the myriad ways it is discussed in literature, film and popular culture... Continue Reading →

Spirituality in the Traditional Martial Arts – Between History and Theory

  “There is a problem with the study of martial arts similar to that identified by Markus Davidson in the case of “spiritual studies”: many of the scholars involved in the topic are themselves practitioners and their work betrays a... Continue Reading →

Chinese Martial Arts, Religion and Spirituality: A Guide for the Perplexed

  Can the confused lead others to clarity?  Perhaps the title of this essay risks overselling the contents as I can think of no subject within the field more demanding of nuance, yet less likely to receive it, than the... Continue Reading →

Lives of Chinese Martial Artists (4): Sun Lutang and the Invention of the “Traditional” Chinese Martial Arts (Part I).

I am currently working on a paper that has me thinking about Sun Lutang again.  To my mind he has always been one of the quintessential pioneers of the modern Chinese martial arts.  So here is Part One of a... Continue Reading →

General Zhang Zhijiang: Mixing Christianity and Kung Fu

    A Different Take on an Old Debate   If you study the traditional Chinese martial arts and have spent any time on the internet, you will have heard some variant of these debates before. Do I need to... Continue Reading →

Lives of Chinese Martial Artists (21): Zhang Zhijiang, Father of the Guoshu Movement

    Introduction Its hard to think of a single individual who had a greater impact on the development of the Chinese martial arts during the all important years of the Republic than Zhang Zhijiang (1882-1966).  His name peppers the... Continue Reading →

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