Britain, the University of Bath has worked in partnership with the European Judo Union to offer a 2-year judo-specific degree in “sports performance” the idea is to duplicate the accomplish- ments of comparable Japanese and South Korean programs. In Europe, colloquia devoted to the martial arts are becoming regular events—the French Conference for Reflection and Research on Combat Sports and Martial Arts (Journées de Réflexions et de Recherches sur les Sports de Com- bat et les Arts Martiaux) has been held nine times since 1991. Martial arts topics are also appear- ing more frequently in academic journals. Between 2006 and 2009, Journal of Sports Science & Medicine ( published three special issues devoted to the physiology, psy- chology, and sociology of combative sports. For an overview of international initiatives, see Gutiérrez and Pérez 2009. All this is a long way of saying that we needed to update many of our entries. The next consideration was whom we should get to write the new entries. For the first book, all but one of the forty-two contributors was from the United States. If we intended to present a global perspective, we needed to do better than that. This time, half of the contributors (34 of 67) are citizens of other countries, and several of the Americans currently live abroad. Other nationalities represented include the United Kingdom (nine contributors), Canada (six), France (five), Spain (three), Israel (two), New Zealand (two), and Iran, Madagascar, Philippines, Russia, South Africa, and Taiwan (one each). We also wanted to include more female authors. Last time, there was just one female author (2.4 percent). This time, there are ten (14.9 percent). Obviously, we knew authors’ areas of specialization before we asked them to write for us. Beyond that, our editorial direction was simple: “Would you like to write a couple thousand words on your topic for our encyclopedia?” This is why different entries have different formats. Nonetheless, it is remarkable how many of the same themes appear, across time, across conti- nents, and across arts. Perhaps there are universal themes. Alternatively, perhaps we have sim- ply been influenced by the same intellectual models and Zeitgeist. In these essays, ecology, history, and culture play important roles. Living in close proximity in a common environment promotes similarities between people, subcultures, and societies lore, identity, and the concept of place (e.g., nationalism) mutually shape and are shaped by one another. At the same time, we are aware that global forces such as film and the Internet inter- act in real time with local forces (i.e., one’s friends, classmates, and teachers). Consequently, once our contributors got started, they were encouraged to discuss the interaction between the folk community and what Amy Shuman (1993) called the “larger than local.” Although this book has more than 120 separate entries, we did not get everything we wanted. Sometimes we ran out of space at other times the desired authors were not available or had other commitments. On the other hand, we received several essays on subjects we had not previously considered, written by authors we did not even know when we started the project. So, in the end, things balanced out. The previous paragraphs discuss what changed. The following are some things that did not change. First, we admit that our definitions of the martial arts are bounded by variables such as time, place, and worldview. As such, they are destined to be less than universal. Second, we note that previous attempts to determine the boundaries of what defines a mar- tial art have drawn heavily—perhaps too heavily—on Japanese models. In the Japanese world- xviii Introduction
Previous Page Next Page