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Academia Encounters the Chinese Martial Arts

Academia Encounters the Chinese Martial Arts The Chinese martial arts are among the oldest elements of Chinese culture, tracing their origins to China's earliest recorded dynasty and still performed today in forms modified over the centuries. Originally practiced in a rough-and-tumble environment where strength and bravery were highly valued, these skills were used in hand-to-hand combat among the large infantry forces pitted against each other during the Warring States period. "How-to" manuals for some of these skills are listed in the Former Han Bibliographies, among them one for boxing, which was considered the foundation for training in the martial arts, and even one for a form of football thought ideal for developing agility on the battlefield. Many of these skills were widespread throughout society during China's early imperial age through the tenth century; they were the core military skills into the Qing period; and they have been reflected in various aspects of the popular culture throughout Chinese history to the present. Widespread as they were, outside the military these skills were nonetheless transmitted in a relatively secretive atmosphere, dominated by narrow loyalties, and their true nature and origins eventually became shrouded in a mist of myth and mystery that even now clouds both Chinese http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png China Review International University of Hawai'I Press

Academia Encounters the Chinese Martial Arts

China Review International , Volume 6 (2) – Sep 1, 1999

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright by University of Hawaii Press
ISSN
1527-9367
Publisher site
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Abstract

The Chinese martial arts are among the oldest elements of Chinese culture, tracing their origins to China's earliest recorded dynasty and still performed today in forms modified over the centuries. Originally practiced in a rough-and-tumble environment where strength and bravery were highly valued, these skills were used in hand-to-hand combat among the large infantry forces pitted against each other during the Warring States period. "How-to" manuals for some of these skills are listed in the Former Han Bibliographies, among them one for boxing, which was considered the foundation for training in the martial arts, and even one for a form of football thought ideal for developing agility on the battlefield. Many of these skills were widespread throughout society during China's early imperial age through the tenth century; they were the core military skills into the Qing period; and they have been reflected in various aspects of the popular culture throughout Chinese history to the present. Widespread as they were, outside the military these skills were nonetheless transmitted in a relatively secretive atmosphere, dominated by narrow loyalties, and their true nature and origins eventually became shrouded in a mist of myth and mystery that even now clouds both Chinese

Journal

China Review InternationalUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Sep 1, 1999

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