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Alexander C. Bennett


Culture of the Sword
2015. 328 p. 25 ill. 233 mm
ISBN: 0-520-28437-2 (0520284372)
Neue ISBN: 978-0-520-28437-1 (9780520284371)

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Kendo is the first book in English to provide an in-depth historical, cultural, and political account of the Japanese martial art of swordsmanship, from its beginnings in military training and arcane medieval schools to its widespread practice today as a global sport. Alexander Bennett shows how kendo evolved through a recurring process of inventing tradition, which served the changing ideologies and needs of Japanese warriors and governments over the course of history. Kendo follows the development of Japanese swordsmanship from the aristocratic-aesthetic pretensions of medieval warriors in the Muromachi period, to the samurai elitism of the Edo regime, and then to the nostalgic patriotism of the Meiji state.
Alexander C. Bennett is Associate Professor at Kansai University. He also serves as vice president of the International Naginata Federation, member of the International Committee of the All Japan Kendo Federation, director of the Japanese Academy of Budo, and head coach of New Zealands national kendo team. He is cofounder and editor in chief of Kendo World.