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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Southern China

Lives of Chinese Martial Artists (9): Woman Ding Number Seven: Founder of the Fujian Yongchun Boxing Tradition

Introduction: Gender and the History of the Chinese Martial Arts Women are a challenging subject in Chinese martial studies.  One the one hand traditions about female boxers, nuns, bandits and heroes abound in the folklore of the “Rivers and Lakes.” ... Continue Reading →

Kung Fu Documentaries and Their Discontents

  Given that many of the readers of Kung Fu Tea come to this blog to read about the history or development of traditional fighting systems, I am willing to bet that each and every one of us has complained... Continue Reading →

The History and Global Transmission of Wing Chun (In Less than Five Thousand Words)

  I was recently invited to contribute an article to a forthcoming volume on the history and development of Wing Chun.  The catch was that it had to be less than five thousand words.  I have literally written hundreds of... Continue Reading →

Chinese Martial Arts in the News: August 19, 2019: Hong Kong, Bruce Lee and New Books!

  Introduction Its been a long hot month with lots of Chinese martial arts news.  That means that now (before the start of the new semester) is the perfect time to get caught up on recent events! For new readers,... Continue Reading →

Three Thoughts on Hong Kong, Social Dislocation and the Fog of War

  “Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future.” Niels Bohr (among others).     With Trepidation I would like to outline three quick points about the current situation in Hong Kong, particularly as it relates to (and sometimes sidesteps)... Continue Reading →

A Visual Study of a Set of Transitional Hudiedao

  Introduction Some apologies are in order.  My professional writing and research has taken me away from the blog for longer than I intended.  In the last month I finished an one article draft, wrote two conference papers and went... Continue Reading →

Ng Chung So – Looking Beyond the “Three Heroes of Wing Chun”

Note: this article originally appeared as a guest post at "Wing Chun Geeks." Ng Chung So: Looking Beyond the “Three Heroes of Wing Chun” The origins of Wing Chun are shrouded in mystery.  We seem to like it that way. ... Continue Reading →

The 19th Century Hudiedao (Butterfly Sword) on Land and Sea

  Introduction Understanding the actual history and use of hudiedao (or Butterfly Swords) reflects the challenges faced by students of martial studies more generally. These short paired swords, with their distinctive D-shaped hand guards, are one of the most commonly... Continue Reading →

Butterfly Swords and Long Poles: A Glimpse into Singapore’s 19th Century Martial Landscape

Introduction: The Weapons of Wing Chun From time to time I am asked why Wing Chun teaches only two weapons. For those unfamiliar with the system these are the long single-tailed fighting pole, favored by a number of southern Chinese... Continue Reading →

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