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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Lessons from the South – Martial Arts of Vietnam, Part II

  ***What follows in the second installment in our short guest series considering the history and development of the Vietnamese martial arts.  Enjoy****   Lessons from the South By Trần Khải Hoài   In the previous section, we looked at... Continue Reading →

Research Note: A Challenge Match in Hong Kong, 1890

  Today’s post comes courtesy of Joseph Svinth who shared an intriguing, if brief, find with me a few weeks ago. Kung Fu legends revel in accounts of high stakes challenge matches. In a typical story a young martial arts... Continue Reading →

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 →

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 →

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 →

Revisiting Alfred Lister: A Forgotten Observer of the Southern Chinese Martial Arts (Part I)

    ***We have now come to the point in the semester that I call "deadline season."  As such, we will be dipping into the archives over the next few weeks to give me some additional time to work on... Continue Reading →

Regional Histories, Localization and the Chinese Martial Arts

  Regulating Kung Fu in Canton The brave new world of electronic databases and digital humanities is certainly opening many doors to new and exciting types of research.  Increasingly scholars can sit down at any university terminal and access previously... Continue Reading →

Red Boats of the Cantonese Opera: Economics, Social Structure and Violence 1850-1950.

    Introduction The "writing sabbatical" continues and I am happy to report that the book chapters and papers are progressing nicely.   This weekend's post comes to us from the early days of Kung Fu Tea, and it covers a... Continue Reading →

An Updated and Revised Social History of the Hudiedao (Butterfly Swords)

  In January of 2013 I posted an essay titled "A Social and Visual History of the Hudiedao (Butterfly Sword) in the Southern Chinese Martial Arts." As a student of Wing Chun I have always been fascinated by these weapons, and... Continue Reading →

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