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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Chinese Martial Arts

Varieties of “Tradition”: Work, Play and Leisure in Martial Arts

  A Different Kind of Race Horse races are strongholds of pageantry and tradition, but when it comes to medieval texture, few can compare with the Palio di Siena. Oddly, any footage of the event reminds me of a critical... Continue Reading →

2018 Christmas Shopping List: Martial Arts Equipment and Long Reads to Get You Through the Winter Months

  I am not going to lie. The annual Christmas list is my favorite post of the year. So welcome to Kung Fu Tea’s seventh annual holiday shopping list!  Not only are we going to find some cool gift ideas, but hopefully... Continue Reading →

The Modern Roots of ‘Ancient’ Martial Arts

I have just arrived back in Ithaca after spending Sunday driving rather than typing.  Still, I have two items that I want to share. The first is a short interview I did with the Rochester Review after The Creation of... Continue Reading →

Bruce Lee: Memory, Philosophy and the Tao of Gung Fu

  ***I am off visiting family over the holiday weekend, so we are headed back to the archives. Since our (American) readers have just celebrated Thanksgiving, I though it would be appropriate to revisit an essay that asks what we... Continue Reading →

Research Notes: Judo’s Triple Transformation in The China Press (1932)

  Doing the Homework Students of Martial Arts Studies are the fortunate few.  As research areas go, ours is pretty interesting. Yet as I review the literature (even recent publications from big name academic presses), it is clear that many... Continue Reading →

Swords, Visuality and the Construction of China

  Deciphering an Icon Recently I came across a few of Harrison Forman’s wartime photos, probably taken in the early 1930s, but circulated to newspapers and (re)published in 1938.  While his photos of militia groups following the 8th Route Army (discussed... Continue Reading →

The Last Shall be First: Finding Meaning in the Martial Arts

    Barnum’s Daughter   I was recently watching the news when I saw a brief segment on “the last” Japanese swordsmith.  The whole things is a little overwrought as there are lots of individuals making swords in Japan today,... Continue Reading →

Performance Ethnography and the Martial Arts Studies Reader

  As the indomitable Professor Farnsworth would say, good news everyone! The long anticipated Martial Arts Studies Reader (Rowman & Littlefield, 2018) is now shipping.  Weighing in at 244 pages, and featuring articles by over a dozen of the most... Continue Reading →

Of Pens and Swords: Jin Yong’s Journey

    The Loss of Heroes The Chinese martial arts community has lost two giants.  The death of Raymond Chow (who was instrumental in jumpstarting Bruce Lee’s martial arts films) and Louis Cha (who wrote under the name Jin Yong)... Continue Reading →

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