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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Daoism

Through a Lens Darkly (54): Preserving a Fading China

  Introduction You may not know her name, but if you have any interest in modern Chinese history, it is almost certain that you have seen her photographs. Hedda Morrison (1908-1991), while not acknowledged as a leading artistic photographer during... Continue Reading →

The Soldier, the Marketplace Boxer and the Recluse: Mapping the Social Location of the Martial Arts in Late Imperial China.

  ***As I mentioned earlier this week, I am currently preparing for the upcoming Martial Arts Studies conference in Cardiff.  As such I have decided to revisit one of the earlier major essays that I wrote for this blog (all... Continue Reading →

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... Continue Reading →

Internal Elixir Cultivation: Robert Coons on the Nature of Daoist Meditation

Robert James Coons. 2015. Internal Elixir Cultivation: The Nature of Daoist Meditation.  Tambuli Media. 140 pp. $22.95   Introduction   Recently Dr. Mark Wiley, who runs Tambuli Media, sent me a copy of a book that he thought I would... Continue Reading →

From the Archives: David Palmer on writing better martial arts history and understanding the sources of “Qi Cultivation” in modern Chinese popular culture.

Qigong Fever. by David Palmer. Columbia University Press, 2007.  ****I would like to thank to all of the individuals who participated in the 2013 Kung Fu Tea Web Symposium on Chinese Martial Studies.  A special thanks is also in order... Continue Reading →

The Soldier, the Marketplace Boxer and the Recluse: Mapping the Social Location of the Martial Arts in Late Imperial China.

Introduction How should we understand the traditional Chinese martial arts?  Are these practices really intended to be a form of practical self-defense, or are they actually some other sort of social performance? Are the arts that we practice today “authentic?”... Continue Reading →

From the Archives: Spiritual Kung Fu – Can Wing Chun be a Secular Religion?

IntroductionThis article was first posted on August 3rd, 2012, making it one of the very first things I ever wrote for Kung Fu Tea.  It was also my first review of an academic article, and my first attempt to deal... Continue Reading →

David Palmer on writing better martial arts history and understanding the sources of “Qi Cultivation” in modern Chinese popular culture.

  Catching Qigong Fever. I have read my fair share of books on religion in late imperial and modern China.  Unfortunately I had been neglecting a classic.  In 2007 David Palmer released a volume titled Qigong Fever: Body, Science and... Continue Reading →

Does Wing Chun need a “spiritual” center? Is it Confucianism?

Spiritual Kung Fu Revisited I recently read something by a somewhat prominent writer on the martial arts that made me sit up and take notice.  The author (who remains nameless as I am about to criticize him) noted that a... Continue Reading →

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