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Feature: Martial Arts Studies no. 7

We’re happy to announce that Martial Arts Studies issue 7 is now freely available at https://mas.cardiffuniversitypress.org/9/volume/0/issue/7/ . Martial Arts Studies is the premier scholarly source for interdisciplinary work on a variety of topics surrounding the practice, sociology, history and media representation of the modern combat sports and traditional martial arts. Published twice yearly, it presents the best research written and reviewed by leaders in the field.

This issue contains an editorial, five articles and three short reviews. The editorial starts by discussing what an “open issue,” such as this one, suggests about the current state of martial arts studies.  The editors note that issue 7 stretches the discussion of the Asian martial arts in geographic terms, and contemplates many complex interactions between physical practice and identity formation.

In their article “The creation of Wing Tsun: a German case study,” Swen Koerner, Mario S. Staller and Benjamin N. Judkins take a detailed look at the global spread of Wing Chun, a hand combat style of kung fu from Guangdong Province.

Next, Kristin Behr and Peter Kuhn examine the “Key factors in career development and transitions in German elite combat sport athletes.” The purpose of their study was to identify factors that facilitate and constrain career development and career transitions. They conclude that an athletic career is a highly complex, multi-layered and individual process.

In the third article, “Fighting gender stereotypes: women’s participation in the martial arts, physical feminism and social change“, Maya Maor explores the social conditions that facilitate gender subversive appropriation in full-contact martial arts, in terms of: 1. close and reciprocal bodily contact, 2. learning new embodiment regimes, and 3. effects of male dominance in the field.

Veronika Partikova continues the ongoing discussion of martial arts and identity formation in “Psychological collectivism in traditional martial arts.” Her paper argues that ‘traditional’ martial arts offer physical skills, moral codes, rituals, roles and hierarchical relationships which, taken together, create the perfect environment for psychological collectivism.

Tim Trausch’s paper “Martial arts and media culture in the information era: glocalization, heterotopia, hyperculture” is derived from the Editor’s Introduction to the collection Chinese martial arts and media culture: global perspectives [Rowman & Littlefield International, 2018]. It argues that recent media texts reflect and (re)produce three paradigms of martial arts and media culture in the information age: glocalization, heterotopia, and hyperculture.

In the review section of this issue, Andreas Niehaus, Leo Istas and Martin Meyer report on the 8th Conference of the German Society of Sport Science’s Committee for Martial Arts Studies, for which the theme was “Experiencing, training and thinking the body in martial arts and martial sports.” Then Spencer Bennington reflects on Udo Moening’s volume Taekwondo: from a martial art to a martial sport. Finally, Qays Stetkevych provides a candid review and close reading of the recently-published Martial arts studies reader [Rowman & Littlefield, 2018].

As always, this issue is freely available online. To find the latest calls for papers and learn more about the journal, go to http://masjournal.org.uk
MAS

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