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Martial Arts and Violence The Boxers are comprised of many experts of Chinese martial arts Many of them died when fighting against the Ally ’ s Expeditionary forces,

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martial arts and violence
Martial Arts and Violence
  • The Boxers are comprised of many experts of Chinese martial arts
    • Many of them died when fighting against the Ally’s Expeditionary forces,
      • They were ignorant of the killing power of Western weapons, rifles, shot guns, machine guns, explosives such as grenades, cannons…
    • Some of the survivors became masters of martial arts after the war
      • They began to run private martial arts training academies/institutes, establishing their own “schools” known for a special “style”
      • Competitions among these schools resulted in collective violence
myths of the martial arts
Myths of the Martial Arts
  • While it is true that the martial arts constitute an important aspect of Chinese physical culture, general understanding of the Chinese martial arts tradition is based on two myths
  • Myths: Their origins are attributed to
    • Bodhidharma, an Indian monk who is said to have come to China in the 6th century and resided in the famous Shaolin Monastery around 525 AD
    • Taiji quan (T’ai-chi ch’uan) allegedly created by Zhang Sanfeng, a mythical Taoist master believed to have lived in the Song, Yuan, or Ming dynasty (1368-1644)
history of martial arts
History of Martial Arts
  • Relation between martial arts and the Confucian tradition
    • Early Confucian curriculum consisted of six subjects
      • Rites
      • Music (with dance)
      • Archery
      • Charioting
      • Calligraphy
      • Mathematics
    • Archery and charioting are related to martial arts
    • Music and dance were often military-related:
      • Military (war) music
      • Military (war) dance
elements of the martial arts in dance
Elements of the Martial Arts in Dance
  • Sword
    • Sword dancing was common in the Warring States Period
    • Popular in the Han, the Three Kingdoms, the Wei, and the Tang dynasties
      • In the end of the Qing, King Chu’s concubine performed sword dance regularly and before she bade farewell to King Chu
      • Tang society was full of martial spirit-- many officials practiced sword dance
      • Calligraphers learned calligraphic skills by observing sword dances
  • Broad knife
  • halberd
martial arts and military writings
Martial Arts and Military Writings
  • Martial arts constituted one of four categories under the heading of “military writings” in traditional Chinese book catalogues
    • Defined as “skills” or “techniques”, which included
      • Archery, fencing, boxing, ancient football game
      • Boxing was interpreted as a combat skill
  • The examination system that began in the Tang consisted of the examination for recruiting men as officials in military offices
manual for training martial arts
Manual for Training Martial Arts
  • New Book of Effective Discipline (1561)
    • By Qi Jiguang, a famous Ming dynasty general
    • Last chapter is about boxing
      • Regarded as basic skill for all the weapons techniques
      • A 32-form set of combat skills are still practiced today, as evidenced by the Chen style and the Yang style taiji quan
      • Also lists well-known boxing styles and weapons techniques of his day
shaolin warrior monks
Shaolin Warrior Monks
  • Known in the Tang because they helped Li Shimin to quell his enemy, facilitating Li family’s unification of China
    • Li Shimin became the second emperor of the Tang dynasty
    • Shaolin warrior monks were awarded and Shaolin martial arts became well known
    • Their best-known combat skills included the use of staff, sword, whip, halberd, in addition to boxing
internal and external boxing schools
Internal and External Boxing Schools
  • Private biographical account indicates the existence of two boxing schools, although its historicity is hard to determine
    • ‘external” school, represented by Shaolin
    • “internal” school, allegedly developed by Zhang Sanfeng, the mythical founder of the Wudang Taoist tradition, who invented Taiji quan.
  • During the mid-Qing, secret societies and religious sects promoted martial arts
    • Professional martial artists ran private protecting agency (biaoju) to escort transported goods and to protect the homes of the wealthy
    • Martial arts styles multiplied
    • Many claimed to trace their origins to either Shaolin or Wudang
current image of shaolin
Current Image of Shaolin
  • Boxing Manuals refer Shaolin Monastery as origin of Chinese boxing
    • Members of secret societies tended to associate themselves with Shaolin
  • Martial art stories and the “Roving Swordsman” novels formed an anti-Manchu image of Shaolin warrior monks and Shaolin myths:
    • Northern Shaolin, Mt. Song, Henan Province
    • Southern Shaolin, Putian, Fujian Province
    • Their martial art skills came from that handed down by Bodhidhama, the first patriarch of Chinese Chan tradition
      • Known as the originator of Muscle Change Classic (Yijin jing), Mallow Cleasing Classic (Xisui jing), Eighteen Lohan exercises….
martial arts under the qing
Martial Arts under the Qing
  • Promotion of physical culture based on Shaolin and Taiji quan came from masters at popular level
    • To participate in the anti-Manchu movement
      • Therefore, Qing emperors ordered the teaching of “boxing and staff” (quan zhang) be prohibited.
      • And private accounts of anti-Manchu nature were burnt
    • As part of overall effort to strengthen national resolve against imperialistic incursions into China
  • Taiji quan and Shaolin boxing competed each other for popularity and supremacy, as authors who favored one over the other wrote about either of them
    • The Travels of Laocan mentioned Bodhidhama as the originator of Shaolin boxing
    • Shaolin School Methods (aka. Secrets of Shaolin Boxing) also expanded on Bodhidhama story
promotion of martial arts
Promotion of Martial Arts
  • Collective memory of the past trauma prompted China’s Nationalist government to begin the promotion of martial arts
    • To develop martial spirit in the people so as to change the image of “sick man of Asia,” an appellation derived from late Qing military failure
    • Both Shaolin martial arts and Taiji quan were promoted
    • Popular myths of Shaolin martial arts as a integral part of the Chinese martial art tradition continued to exert influence, despite scholars’ efforts to demythologize them
  • Anti-Manchu and anti-Japanese sentiments in the 20-century martial arts institutes continue to exert their impacts
martial arts in end of the qing
Martial Arts in End of the Qing
  • The Boxers revealed the pervasiveness of traditional martial arts in Chinese society, despite early Qing prohibition
  • Shanghai in 1909 saw the establishment of the first physical culture and sports organization, which in 1910 took the name of Jingwu Tiyu hui, or Martial Excellence Physical Culture Association
    • Martial Arts teacher Huo Yuanjia and his disciple, Liu Zhensheng, were most famous
bruce lee lee xiaolong and violence
Bruce Lee (Lee Xiaolong) andViolence
  • Bruce Lee was a very violent man, but he was a hero in many Asians’ eyes. The Time Magazine named him “the hero and idol of the 20th century.” Why?
  • A symbol of
    • Perfection in martial arts, gongfu (kung-fu)
    • Creativity—he synthesized various martial arts techniques to create his own unique style called Jeet-kune do (Jiequan dao, the way of the intercepting fist)
    • Patriotism, dignity, and self-esteem
    • Anti-racism
    • Successful revenge
bruce lee and the boxers
Bruce Lee and the Boxers
  • Bruce Lee believes that good and right martial-arts training can produce martial-arts techniques to overcome fiercest adversary
    • Reminiscence of the Boxers in 1900, who thought that martial-arts training made them immune to bullets
  • He turned his body into a weapon that could kill