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Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Martial Studies

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 →

Top Five Changes in Martial Arts: 2020 Edition

  Introduction I was scrolling through Facebook the other day and came across a “Top Five” list…of other “Top Five” lists. It was a wonderfully meta idea and it made me realize how long it had been since we had... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly (65): Filipino Knives, Imperialism and the Asian Martial Arts

Vintage Postcard. Source: Author's Collection It sometimes seems as though I am only Wing Chun aficionado who doesn’t have a sideline in the Filipino martial arts. On a cultural level we can thank Bruce Lee and his high-profile relationship with... 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 →

“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 →

Guest Post: The Meaning and Origin of Taolu in Chinese Martial Arts

  Introduction Like many of you, I am currently recovering from our 6th annual Martial Arts Studies Conference which selected as its theme "Martial Arts, Religion & Spirituality." Some great papers were given and I continue to be impressed by the ever... Continue Reading →

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