Episode 199 – Fist of Legend, Part 6

In which we bring things to a close by considering the fall of the Butokukai, the spread of budo beyond Japan, the role of martial arts in the African-American community, the question of Olympic sport status, and the challenge of the UFC. It’s gonna be a busy week.

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

This excellent article on martial arts and black power.

NYT piece on kendo and the olympic sport question.

Images

shinai4
As part of an attempt to shed its militaristic image, some kendo practitioners adopted the European-style fencing jacket as a practice outfit after the US Occupation.
eeedb5ae6ab8938761353ef3aa2fc0ea
Steve Sanders (Muhammed) on right, with Jim Kelly of Enter the Dragon fame on the left. The Black Karate Federation logo is visible behind them.
karate-illustrated-steve-sanders-cover
Sanders on the cover of a Karate Illustrated magazine. From the excellent article provided by Kung Fu Tea.
Olympic Judo London 2012 (74 of 98)
Judo at the 2012 London Olympics. The precise role of competition in budo remains fiercely debated, and there are some among other budo communities who point to a perceived decline in the aesthetic qualities of judo as a warning about the dangers of a focus on competition.

Episode 198 – Fist of Legend, Part 5

This week: can a martial art be a philosophy of life? Can it rise to the level of a religion?

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Stalker, Nancy K. Prophet Motive: Deguchi Onisaburo, Omotokyo, and the Rise of New Religions. 

So, Doshin. This is Shorinji Kempo. (note: there’s basically nothing academic on Shorinji Kempo out there, which makes many of the claims in this book and others difficult to verify).

Ueshiba, Kisshomaru. Aikido. 

Images

Morihei_Ueshiba_1939
Ueshiba Morihei in his middle age, around the time he went to Tokyo.
250px-Takeda_Sokaku
Takeda Sokaku, Ueshiba’s first teacher.
sokaku-takeda-osaka-36-08
Takeda demonstrating Daito-ryu at the Asahi Shimbun offices in 1936.
Morihei_Ueshiba_Portrait
Ueshiba later in life.
kaiso-around-1950s
So Doshin as a younger man.
Doshin_So's_Instruction
So Doshin instructs one of his most famous pupils, the martial arts film star Sonny Chiba.

Episode 195 – Fist of Legend, Part 2

This week: who wants to swing a sword when you can just shoot a gun?

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Hurst, G. Cameron. Armed Martial Arts of Japan. 

Gainty, Denis. Martial Arts and the Body Politic in Meiji Japan.

Stevens, John. The Way of Judo. 

Images

Episode 194 – Fist of Legend, Part 1

This week: where do Japan’s traditional martial arts come from?

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Read, Paul. One Last Thing: The Untold History of the Martial Arts Philosophy.

Meyer, Isaac. The Soul of a Nation: Swordsmanship in Modern Japan. (BA Thesis, Wesleyan University, 2010)

Jansen, Marius. The Making of Modern Japan

Images

techniques
A page from the Heiho Kadensho of Yagyu Shinkage-ryu. Books like this one were designed not to propagate the style but to act as certificates of expertise for instructors.
caption
The domain school of the old Aizu domain, the Nisshinkan. At schools like this one, samurai children would learn a fusion of martial arts and Confucianism unique to the Tokugawa era.
kobudo.jpg.w300h170
Traditional karate weapons like these were derived from common household or farming implements, a reminder of karate’s low-class origins.

Episode 193 – No Country for Young Women, Part 2

This week: what are three educated women to do in a society that doesn’t value their education?

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Nimura, Janice. Daughters of the Samurai.

Furuki, Yoshiko. The White Plum, a Biography of Tsuda Ume.

Tsuda, Umeko and Yoshiko Furuki. The Attic Letters: Ume Tsuda’s Correspondence to her American Mother.

Some excellent biographical sketches of Ume, Shige and Sutematsu are available here.

Images

4724351209_e9cd80cfc3
Nagai Shige as a college student at Vassar.
shemats
Yamakawa Sutematsu as a student at Vassar.
Iwao_and_Sutematsu_Oyama
Oyama Iwao and Sutematsu together. Initially a political marriage, by all accounts the union became a very happy one.
1900
Tsuda Ume in her dorm room at Bryn Mawr. This makes me feel much better about how my dorm looked in college.
Oyama and Bacon1
Alice Bacon with Shige, Sutematsu, and Ume during her time working for the Joshi Gakushuin.
67895929_1456427649
Anna Cope Hartshorne, Tsuda Ume’s closest friend and collaborator in building Tsuda College.
img_1162_1_2_thumb
The modern campus of Tsuda College in Kodaira. The school’s tremendous success can be attributed in part to the amazing energy of its founder.

Episode 192 – No Country for Young Women, Part 1

220px-Empress_Shoken
Empress Shoken in Western-style court dress. She was charged with seeing off the five girls and giving them their mission.
Ch0_2_5GirlsKimono-700x500
The girls on arriving in the West. From left to right: Ryo, Sutematsu, Shige, Ume, and Tei.
dscf7286
Adeline and Charles Lanman.
1c805382a70aa53e8bd6cf26dbf4c248
From left to right: Ume, Sutematsu, and Shige.
9b303a4b320817bcccdb0f8d323c8f80
Shige as a young girl living in New Haven.

This week: the beginning of a two parter on Japan’s first ever female exchange students.

Listen to the episode here.

You can check out Astra Nullius here.

Sources

Nimura, Janice. Daughters of the Samurai.

Furuki, Yoshiko. The White Plum, a Biography of Tsuda Ume.

Tsuda, Umeko and Yoshiko Furuki. The Attic Letters: Ume Tsuda’s Correspondence to her American Mother.

Some excellent biographical sketches of Ume, Shige and Sutematsu are available here.

Images

 

 

Episode 191 – Lifting the Lost, Part 9

This week: what, in the end, did the Occupation mean — for both the occupied and the occupier?

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Dower, John. Embracing Defeat.

Dr. Dower’s editorial on the Japan-Iraq comparison.

Pyle, Kenneth. Japan Rising: The Resurgence of Japanese Power and Purpose.

Jansen, Marius. The Making of Modern Japan.

Images

Pro-MacArthur Demonstration in New York, 1951
Truman’s decision to fire Douglas MacArthur was not only unpopular in Japan but in the US as well; it contributed to a plummeting approval rating and to Truman’s ultimate decision not to attempt a run for a second, complete term.
220px-NPR_personnel
The early days of the National Police Reserve, which eventually became the modern Japan Self-Defense Forces.
Shigeru Yoshida Signs Security Pact
Yoshida Shigeru signs the 1951 San Francisco Treaty, which went into effect the following year.
9
Kishi plays golf with President Eisenhower.
Untitled
Kishi at the Yankees game.
s1.reutersmedia
In an ironic twist, Japan was also caught up in America’s newest attempts at nation-building; JSDF personnel were deployed outside of combat zones to assist in reconstruction efforts.