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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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economic market

“Fighting Styles” or “Martial Brands”? An economic approach to understanding “lost lineages” in the Chinese Martial Arts.

  ***Today's post continues our discussion of economic markets and modernity in the Chinese martial arts.  This essay, first posted in May of 2013, was one of my first attempts at hashing out these questions as they related to advertising... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly (18): Chinese Martial Arts and Early 20th Century Cigarette Cards: Building the Global Image of Kung Fu.

Introduction: Why do we study ephemera? In many respects the study of the history of the traditional martial arts is the study of Chinese popular culture.  Sometimes we approach the subject from the perspective of political or military history, and... Continue Reading →

Through a Lens Darkly (17): “Selling the Art”: Martial Artists in the Marketplace, 1900-1930

  Introduction: Informants and the Problem of Reliability   The study of the traditional martial arts has tended to rely rather heavily on interviews with “participant informants.”  Cultivating relationships with informants and learning about their worldview consumes much of a... Continue Reading →

“Fighting Styles” or “Martial Brands”? An economic approach to understanding “lost lineages” in the Chinese Martial Arts.

Introduction Much of our modern writing on the Chinese martial arts is premised on the examination of difference.  Nor is this an abstract categorization of dry facts.  Our discussions always seem to run along a similar track. Of all of... Continue Reading →

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