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Looks at southern Chinese martial arts traditions and how they have become important to local identity and narratives of resistance. This book explores the social history of southern Chinese martial arts and their contemporary importance to local identity and narratives of resistance. Hong Kong’s Bruce Lee ushered the Chinese martial arts onto an international stage in the 1970s. Lee’s teacher, Ip Man, master of Wing Chun Kung Fu, has recently emerged as a highly visible symbol of southern Chinese identity and pride. Benjamin N. Judkins and Jon Nielson examine the emergence of Wing Chun to reveal how this body of social practices developed and why individuals continue to turn to the martial arts as they navigate the challenges of a rapidly evolving environment. After surveying the development of hand combat traditions in Guangdong Province from roughly the start of the nineteenth century until 1949, the authors turn to Wing Chun, noting its development, the changing social attitudes towards this practice over time, and its ultimate emergence as a global art form.
Looks at southern Chinese martial arts traditions and how they have become important to local identity and narratives of resistance. This book explores the social history of southern Chinese martial arts and their contemporary importance to local identity and narratives of resistance. Hong Kong’s Bruce Lee ushered the Chinese martial arts onto an international stage in the 1970s. Lee’s teacher, Ip Man, master of Wing Chun Kung Fu, has recently emerged as a highly visible symbol of southern Chinese identity and pride. Benjamin N. Judkins and Jon Nielson examine the emergence of Wing Chun to reveal how this body of social practices developed and why individuals continue to turn to the martial arts as they navigate the challenges of a rapidly evolving environment. After surveying the development of hand combat traditions in Guangdong Province from roughly the start of the nineteenth century until 1949, the authors turn to Wing Chun, noting its development, the changing social attitudes towards this practice over time, and its ultimate emergence as a global art form.
Wing Chun is the most popular form of Chinese Kung Fu in the world today, with over four million practitioners. The art as it is presently understood has been handed down from teacher to student for more than three hundred years. Until now, no one has ever stepped back and taken a critical look at why this art’s techniques are presented and performed the way they are. This book, by Wing Chun master Danny Xuan and martial-arts authority John Little, is the first to decipher these techniques that until now have been encrypted within this art. Xuan and Little reveal how Wing Chun was designed holistically, based on the laws of physics, human nature, and biomechanics. It was also designed with economy, efficiency, and productivity in mind. Unlike other martial arts, Wing Chun doesn’t focus on making a person larger, more rugged, acrobatic or animal-like; rather, it focuses on making optimal use of one’s own bodily structure and power potential by applying the sciences of biomechanics and physics. Thus, it is possible for males and females of all ages and sizes to excel in this art. The Tao of Wing Chun provides a readable, authoritative means of cultivating personal protection skills, enhanced flexibility, improved coordination, greater stamina, and physical and mental fitness while simultaneously cultivating humility, focus, determination, self-confidence, character, camaraderie, and deep inner strength. Foremost, this book offers the reader the means by which to apply Wing Chun principles in daily life. Enhanced by forty-eight full-color illustrations, The Tao of Wing Chun will fascinate, educate, and entertain a wide range of readers—from beginner to master. Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Sports Publishing imprint, is proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in sports—books about baseball, pro football, college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, or soccer, we have a book about your sport or your team. In addition to books on popular team sports, we also publish books for a wide variety of athletes and sports enthusiasts, including books on running, cycling, horseback riding, swimming, tennis, martial arts, golf, camping, hiking, aviation, boating, and so much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to publishing books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked by other publishers and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.
Demon warrior puppets, sword-wielding Taoist priests, spirit mediums lacerating their bodies with spikes and blades--these are among the most dramatic images in Chinese religion. Usually linked to the propitiation of plague gods and the worship of popular military deities, such ritual practices have an obvious but previously unexamined kinship with the traditional Chinese martial arts. The long and durable history of martial arts iconography and ritual in Chinese religion suggests something far deeper than mere historical coincidence. Avron Boretz argues that martial arts gestures and movements are so deeply embedded in the ritual repertoire in part because they iconify masculine qualities of violence, aggressivity, and physical prowess, the implicit core of Chinese patriliny and patriarchy. At the same time, for actors and audience alike, martial arts gestures evoke the mythos of the jianghu, a shadowy, often violent realm of vagabonds, outlaws, and masters of martial and magic arts. Through the direct bodily practice of martial arts movement and creative rendering of jianghu narratives, martial ritual practitioners are able to identify and represent themselves, however briefly and incompletely, as men of prowess, a reward otherwise denied those confined to the lower limits of this deeply patriarchal society. Based on fieldwork in China and Taiwan spanning nearly two decades, Gods, Ghosts, and Gangsters offers a thorough and original account of violent ritual and ritual violence in Chinese religion and society. Close-up, sensitive portrayals and the voices of ritual actors themselves--mostly working-class men, many of them members of sworn brotherhoods and gangs--convincingly link martial ritual practice to the lives and desires of men on the margins of Chinese society. This work is a significant contribution to the study of Chinese ritual and religion, the history and sociology of Chinese underworld, the history and anthropology of the martial arts, and the anthropology of masculinity.
"Remembering the Master is a glimpse into the lives of Bruce Lee and James Yimm Lee, related through the memories of those closest to them during the Oakland years, where they changed the course of martial arts history with the creation of Jeet Kune Do"--
Possible Origins presents for the first time an in depth cultural history of Chinese martial arts. It offers fresh perspectives and the latest research to show how martial arts have preserved religious and theatrical traditions hidden inside martial skills. It connects previously unexamined elements of Chinese cultural history directly to the arts people practice today. Everyone wants to know where their martial art came from and how it was created-here, for the first time, is the authentic story. Find answers to questions like: What is a sworn brotherhood? How do talismans work? Why does Tai Chi have so much mime in it? Why does Baguazhang look like a guy riding around on roller skates? Was the Shaolin Monastery a performing arts center? How can you tell if a martial art is Daoist or Buddhist? And what is so important about emptiness? Master practitioners, beginning students, and serious scholars will discover parts of their practice they didn't know were there.
Why do so many Americans practice martial arts? How did kung fu get its own movie genre? What makes mixed martial arts so popular? This book answers these questions for the first time with historical research. At the turn of the 20th century, the United States enjoyed a time of prosperity but feared that men were becoming soft. At the same time, the Japanese government sponsored research to develop the best fighting techniques for its new empire. Before World War II, American men boxed and Japanese men practiced judo and karate. Postwar Americans began adopting Chinese, Brazilian, Filipino and other fighting styles, in the process establishing a masculine subculture based on physical and social power. The rise of Asian martial arts in America is a fascinating untold story of modern history, from the origin of karate uniforms to the first martial arts themed birthday party. The cast of characters includes circus strongmen, professional cage fighters, an award winning comic book artist, the inventors of judo, aikido and Cornflakes, and Count Juan Raphael Dante, a Chicago hairdresser and used car salesman with the "Deadliest Hands in the World." Readers will never look at taekwondo class the same way again.

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