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Tvebak
10-18-2001, 10:55 PM
Have anyone of you heard of the Haitian MA Ladja? I have heard that it should be like capoeira without acrobatics and with more hand striking and wrestling.
Supposely it shares some roots to the african art N´golo with capoeira, hence the resemblence.
Anyone of you know it?

Felipe Bido
10-20-2001, 07:13 PM
And that's TOO strange, since I live in the same island. However, is a totally different country and language. I'll have to check it out, anyway.

-------------------------
"To be great is to be misunderstood"- Emerson

Tvebak
10-20-2001, 08:35 PM
I just spoke to a guy who said that its basically the same art as danmye in matinique.
He also said that the art i heavely influenced by the senegalese fighting styles, hance the wrestling elements.
I once saw some danmye tapes from senegal and even though it was difficult to see the details it looked a lot like capoeira.
It a very interresting fact to add to the discussion of wheter capoeira originated in brasil or africa.
Funny thing was that there was a traditional Taekwondo master present watching the tape and he said that the art looked a lot like taekyon.

Stranger
10-21-2001, 06:34 PM
Tvebak,

Have you ever seen or heard about Jailhouse Rock? It is linked to the African martial arts, but developed along its own lines in the American penal system.

I don't get mad.
I get stabby.

Tvebak
10-26-2001, 08:50 AM
I have heard about it, i think there is one master in a danish jail...as soon as i find out where im going to make a failed attempt at robbing a 7-11 to get in and train with him.

Stranger
10-26-2001, 09:15 PM
lol :D

Lethal Weapon I has some of it in the fight choreography.

There is a lot of info on stickgrappler's page about Jailhouse Rock, its origins, and its similarities to African MA.

I don't get mad.
I get stabby.

danmyete
02-15-2006, 04:44 PM
Danmye, like Capoeira, derives from African combatives. See T.J. Desch Obi's work on these and the African-American variant known knockin' 'n Kickin'. There was was an African derived art done here as well called "Jack," based on animal movements as are the other African arts. I suspect the the African-American phrase "I'm gonna "jack" you up derives from this artform.

African-Americans also developed a mixture of African arts and Western Boxing called "Cutting." It mixed African offensive and defensive skills with Western punches. It is also apparent that African Sanguar (weapons, blows from limbs evasion) skills are the cornerstone of what we know of today as Western Boxing, which, to me, is more African than Western. Early Western boxing does not use the dipping and swaying movements which part of the core of defensive skills used by the African Imbare, Kimbare, for example, in evading spear and "throwing knives" weaponry and bladed/stick cuts and strikes. This is an African technique which augmented blocking skills, etc.

Also, Breakdancing does not derive from Capoeira but from a warrior physical culture in Africa of which the Ongolo (the ancestor of current Capoeira) is but a part.

Eddie
02-16-2006, 12:11 AM
everything in africa os done top rythm, but that doesnt mean that break dancing comes from africa. I dont see the relation really, and I see africans everyday, all day. itss part of my culture

danmyete
02-16-2006, 04:41 PM
It is most amazing that the origins of the Polka, Savate, or any other non-African cultural practice is rarely challenged. However, anything African is automatically questioned because the unspoken idea, subconsciously or not, is that Africans are not "intelligent enough" to have invented it, thus, it must have been developed by non-Africans or via cultural diffusion from non-African sources.

What is called "breakdancing" here is part of ritual warriors celebratory dances as seen among the Peuhl of Guinea, with their men's acrobatic dances (see Kariamu Welsh-Asante's African dance for a brief description of Peuhl "Bridges," back and shoulder spins-they also do the arm into elbow/hand-base spin) and non-chalant freezes which makes up the play aspects of African combative rituals; among the Akamba of Kenya, et al. Elements of the Ongolo tradition, for example, are even found among the Kung! of S.A. as demonstrated in their "Ostrich" Ongolo type combat game (for which see the Smithsonian African series archival video footage).

Breakdancing, as WE HAVE PRESENTLY COME TO KNOW IT, has all the characteristics of an African artform, including the fact that it comes out of the African-American community in the States. Likewise, there is footage of early African-American dance which shows the same type of uprocking, spinning repetoire now associated with this genre of African derived dance.

mickey
02-17-2006, 08:50 PM
Greetings,

danmyete, thank you for the history lessons. Keep it coming!

I have heard of Haitian martial arts at two points in my life:

1- In 1978 a classmate describes the fighting art of Haiti without mentioning the name. It focused on punching, kicking, elbowing, stomping, biting and gouging. Very in close and thorough.


2- In 2004, one of my clients from the Dominican Republic shared that the moves of capoeria (namely, the acrobatics, the kicks, and the musical component) are also practiced by the Haitians and those who live near the Dominican Republic/Haiti area. .


This has strengthened my belief that Savate may have originally been a West African martial art to begin with since it was often associated with the French "underclass." Haitians pretty much constituted that underclass.


I forgot to add one more thing:

Catherine Dunham, dance choreographer and High Priestess, has preserved aspects of the Haitian fighting methods in a dance choreography. Interestingly, Capoeria is taught at her school; some may call that a spiritual linkage.

mickey

Mr Punch
02-18-2006, 05:32 PM
The origins of the polka are easily traceable: it has a documented history.

The origins of Savate are frequently challenged as are the origins of most CMA and the origins of many many white western traditions, not only fighting/dancing, usually those with a beginning steeped in oral history.

The origins of breakdancing follow a rich cultural oral tradition, therefore there is no written history, making it harder to trace. Don't get me wrong mate, I think you're right in the inherent racism of a lot of people who deny African history, but it is made easier for them to do so by the fact that most African traditions are oral.

Having said that, I've never seen Eddie make a racist comment on the baord, so shouldn't we give him the benefit of the doubt.

As for myself, I don't see any reason to attribute Western boxing's origins to African fighting arts:

1) There is some limited evidence that the ducking and weaving came from the changes to the rules after Queensbury came in, for various reasons I won't go into now.

2) There haven't been any major African boxing champions as far as I can remember (if you can think of any please let me know). Of course a lot of boxing champs have been black and their origins were in Africa, but there's no evidence that for example Ali got any exposure to African arts before his boxing style was already well developed.

3) Western pugilism has a well-documented history through newspaper articles and commentator's social commentaries etc going back some 300 years. The developments in ducking and weaving have come much more recently, but can be traced as a progression in rules as in (1) above.

I'm not saying there's definitelt no influence but so far, I think it's a bit of a stretch to say that it's definitely the case that African arts gave us boxing.

And no, I'm not dissing African nations or history and I don't think intelligence comes into it one way or the other (but BTW, do you think intelligence would be a major factor in the foundation of a) a dance style or b) a fighting style?), I just don't agree.

Mr Punch
02-18-2006, 05:36 PM
BTW, welcome to the board.

Seems you have some good opinions and knowledge of history, hope you stick around and don't find too much racism where there is none: god knows there's enough around in other places for you to find!

mickey
02-20-2006, 02:58 PM
danmyete,

Regarding Paragraph 5: Korea and Africa.

I have been looking at Korea for some time now. There is definitely a West African connection. They possess a two sided drum that is called "Chango," that is the name of a powerful West African God. They also perform a dance with a ribbon whirling from the top of their head, Something that is done in West Africa as well. The drum I refer to is here:

http://www.africantreasures.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=DRUM0006

Strong correlations have been found between West African Gods and the Gods of Shinto. I say this because the Koreans and the Japanese are essentially the same people (it has been proven) despite the bile that they spew at each other.

Additonally, there was a time when it was fashionable to have African manserveants and Korean maidservants in China. During this time Africans in China were called "Kun Lun"


mickey

danmyete
02-20-2006, 03:09 PM
The Haitian art you mention could be one of the following: Pinge, the unarmed form of Muti, Ga-Ga or Bu-Bu.

danmyete
02-20-2006, 03:09 PM
The Haitian art you mention could be one of the following: Pinge, the unarmed form of Muti, Ga-Ga or Bu-Bu.

danmyete
02-20-2006, 03:17 PM
I am aware of the Korean "two headed" drum, its "ribbon" dance and the fact that Tae Kyon has a from of "Ginga," for lack of a more appropriate term in Korean.

I am aware of the early Chinese term for Africans as "Mo Kun Lun," and that there was a Chinese Pirate, actually mentioned in an article from Kung Fu Magazine, who had as part of his crew/bodyguard 300 ex-former African "slaves" from Macau. Since they came from Macau, there is an Ongolo connection. It is clear that they probably would not have been part of the crew if they could not fight, and it is doubtful that what they would have used would have been Asian combatives. For those interested in going in this direction, more indepth research would be needed to corroborate such a supposition.

Incidently, Chango's drum is the Bata. The Bata, however, has only one head.

Thanks for the discourse.

danmyete
02-20-2006, 03:26 PM
Thanks for the reply and welcome.

Here's my reply:

I have a major distrust of the Western approach to corroborating subjects through so-called textual sources (as major sources of research material given the level of erroneous ideas birthed thru this methodology). This approach begs a certain degree of trust that, frankly, given the West's rather twisted approach to recording Western and non-Western "history" and culture, I cannot give unreservedly.

What is called "Breakdancing" here has a form of performance play which is identical to that of the Peuhl ritual warrior's acrobatic dancing. Breakdancing does not derive from Capoeira, which IS also African derived, nor from Chinese Ti-Tang ground fighting skills. It is IDENTICAL in structure to men's ritual warriors performative dances of this type. Examples can be found in the Ivory Coast, Senegambia, Kenya, et al.

The vast majority of people "denying" African history has more to do with white supremist agendas/interests, etc., then to any legitimate reason to do so. It is as though expressing the idea that Africans have their own histories, cultures and traditions, which are worthy of respect, is some how an affront to white histories, cultures and traditions.

What do you mean by "most African traditions are oral?" The French deliberately destroyed the African script, from older African writing traditions, known as the Bamum script of the Cameroon. The Bassa script was discouraged by the "Colonial" usurpers of Sierra Leone. The Nsibidi script of Nigeria/Cameroon is the origins of the African derived Abakua script in Cuba. It is a gross distortion by Western propaganda to paint such an erroneous picture of traditional African societies.

"Eddie" referenced the idea of whether or not Capoeira was African. What is interesting is that no one ever assumes the opposite until "proven otherwise." That it was created by persons of African descent is one bit of evidence that should be looked at before assumptions to the contrary are ever mentioned. He also mentioned a Tae Kwon Do instructor who noted Ladja's supposed "similarity" to Tae Kyon. Why mention this, since, clearly, beyond a superficial manner, the two are not related at all? One is African, the other is Korean. Since there were no known Koreans sent to Martinique, nor Africans known to have been sent to Korea (who may have practiced such African derived martial skills), why enter into a discussion with such a premise? What is the motive?

If you are saying that the type of ducking and weaving used by contemporary boxers, made famous by AFRICAN-American boxer mohammed Ali, was a pre-African-American developement, please point these out. I have read Terry Brown's "English Martial Arts." I have seen nothing in the text which supports the idea that, beyond rudimentary leaning back while barring a blow to the stomach, the intricate bobbing and weaving used by African-Amercian boxers derives from Marcus-of-Queensbury boxing. Africans in the U.S. had several African MAs, such as Knocking and Kicking and the high-bred art called "Cutting," which fused the evasive footwork from the African derived Omkandeka palm striking sub art of (read: Ongolo/N'Golo/Nzanga/Sanga/Capoeira/Ladja/Danmye/Nsusa/Knockin' 'n Kickin'/Broma/Mani-Bombousa) African martial traditions with English boxing.

Mohammed Ali/Mike Tyson/Joe Frazier/Ken Norton/Thomas Hearns/Sugar Ray Leonard, et al., was as African as Doc Fai Wong is (and Bruce Lee considered himself) Chinese. Top contenders for this designation would be Azumah Nelson as well. Black does not define an Ancestry, but only approximates African melanin content, since I have never seen a white, yellow nor black person in all actuality.

The Portuquese commented on the African evasive skills known in Ki-Kongo as Sanguar, as practiced by the KIMBARE (warrior specialists given additional martial training). This ability enabled them to twist and turn out of harms way of projectile and cutting/thrusting weaponry. This was documented as early as 1570. In fact, the female Nzingha (ruler of the Kongo nation during the time of its war with Portugal), for which the name has now become synomomous, was said to have been able to defeat no less than 25 warriors at any given time with Nzanga martial art, and to have still been able to do so in her seventies; she even apologies, in when of the accounts, to the Portuguese giving the account, for not being able to do so as quickly as in her youth (for brief accounts of this and Sanguar, see Thomas Thortans texts on the "African" slave trade.

The French attempted to ban the Practice of Ladja/Danmye, as the Portuguese attempted with the Ongolo/Capoeira. See Dr. T.J. Desch Obi's works on these and other aspects of indigenous, traditional African combatives.

mickey
02-20-2006, 03:38 PM
Greetings,

The Katherine Dunham dance choreography is called "L'ag Ya," first performed in 1938. Ag Ya being the fighting method practiced in Martinique:

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/freetodance/biographies/dunham.html

danmyete,

I really enjoy what you have shared so far. Please be careful when you are looking to distinguish African from Asian combatives. The African martial arts perspective is that of a continuum from the most ancient times, radiating outward in waves.


mickey

danmyete
02-20-2006, 04:00 PM
Greetings All,

I apologize if these posts are more heated than I may have liked. I also apologize for any unedited grammatical errors incurred thusfar.

As to the question of Savate, this an interesting one. Some enthusiasts would like to see Savate as the origins of everything under the sun (Prof. Buitron), especially African MAs. Here is my perception based on my research:

1. The African arts have circular, acrobatic (Ongolo) and toe point (Mrenge/Morenge) kicking methods.

2. Palm systems include Omkandeka and Kambangula.

3. Fist arts include the African core of RoinPoing-Round Fist-from Ladja/Danmye.

4. A core practice is the placing the hands on the ground from which to launch powerful kicking techniques; to imitate the Ongolo or Ostrich, as in the Kung's! "Ostrich" Game, or in reference to communicating with the Ancestors via the Ancestral Realm which, in certain key (Yoruba) African cultures, is upside down to our own.

5. Africans used as "fighting ****s" or enforcers, with the African derived fighting skills as the martial technique used, on plantations.

6. Whites observing these bouts on plantations and during the post abolitionary period.

7. Chausson showing similarities to the African/African derived arts ( Nsusa/Ladja-Danmye/Mani-Bombousa/Capoeira/Yuna Onse/Knockin 'n Kickin'/Pushin' 'n Dancin'/Mrenge/Morenge/Morinque/KaLadja, et al).

The bogus argument that the acrobatic nature of Chausson exists due to its practioners fighting aboard pitching boats when the lithograghs show spectators watching this "game" from rather comfortible, free-standing postions. A pitching ship does not, BTW, allow for any activity save specifically naval ones!

To Be Cont'd...

Mr Punch
02-21-2006, 03:10 AM
Strong correlations have been found between West African Gods and the Gods of Shinto.Sure. And to pre-Christian religions. That's because they are mostly animist religions.


I say this because the Koreans and the Japanese are essentially the same people (it has been proven) despite the bile that they spew at each other.No, it hasn't been proven, it's a theory. Many serious Japanese scholars suggest that the two major landings and first settlements were from China and Korea, sure.

There is little archaeological evidence to back this up, but logically it seems to make sense.

Anthropologically, more than 90% of the Japanese are born with the Moukouhan or the Mongolian Spot, a patch of dark skin like a bruise at the base of the spine that disappears in childhood which is shared only with the Mongolian people.

However, if you have any of that proof you mentioned I'd like to read about it.

Mr Punch
02-21-2006, 03:54 AM
I have a major distrust of the Western approach to corroborating subjects through so-called textual sources (as major sources of research material given the level of erroneous ideas birthed thru this methodology). This approach begs a certain degree of trust that, frankly, given the West's rather twisted approach to recording Western and non-Western "history" and culture, I cannot give unreservedly.Agreed on the biases. As a kid in the UK I learned about the world through its relationship with the UK. Fortunately, most of the world has had a relationship with the UK however exploitative and disgusting my countrymen's attitude was (although I am a reluctant apologist: most cultures are as bad as each other - and in this respect future conduct holds more interest to me) so I could learn quite a bit about some aspects. It's strange: we studied in our first history books about biases and differences in evidence, and yet we still only studied UK-biased history! It's like nobody really gave a **** about teaching different opinions/opposing evidence. Though it did help me to develop a very critical eye. Anyway, my schooling is pretty much ancient history too!:D

On the other hand, because I challenged a couple of your historical statements (lightly! - you know a lot more about this subject than I do!) doesn't mean I subscribe to the Western models completely. I challenge everything that seems to have a shakey foundation, only that.

However, through textual sources we have some very useful accounts of many countries and situations. This is not only from for example, a British officer's experience in the Afghan Campaign in 1815, but his relating of the locals' versions of history too. Although this is of course through a Western Imperialist's eye, in some cases it's still one of the most reliable sources we're likely to get. What's the alternative?


The vast majority of people "denying" African history has more to do with white supremist agendas/interests, etc., then to any legitimate reason to do so. It is as though expressing the idea that Africans have their own histories, cultures and traditions, which are worthy of respect, is some how an affront to white histories, cultures and traditions.Yes, but in many cases, even over and above white supremacist agendas is a basic human laziness in establishing accuracy. And even originally in the colonial days, I don't believe, having read countless first-hand accounts of officers and enlisted men in British Army, plus missionaries, doctors, teachers etc, I don't believe that the 'white supremacy' back then was the same as the term bandied about now.

Most of the actions of the British Empire were based on trade and its inherent greed, extreme ignorance, and in some cases a (naturally completely) misplaced belief that they were actually doing some good. There was no white supremacist agenda, as in a plan, they just 'knew' that whites were superior! Do you see the distinction? I think there was little malice. Of course that doesn't make their actions any better.

Also, I would agree with you that nowadays some historians are driven by white supremacist agenda, but usually still historians are just lazy and ignorant.


What do you mean by "most African traditions are oral?" The French deliberately destroyed the African script, from older African writing traditions, known as the Bamum script of the Cameroon. The Bassa script was discouraged by the "Colonial" usurpers of Sierra Leone. The Nsibidi script of Nigeria/Cameroon is the origins of the African derived Abakua script in Cuba. It is a gross distortion by Western propaganda to paint such an erroneous picture of traditional African societies.Sorry, I wasn't meaning that Africans inherently follow an oral tradition. Your post has just informed me of several African scripts which I didn't know existed, and you are no doubt at all, much better versed in African history than I am. But regardless, correct me if I'm wrong, most African societies didn't note historical stories and opinions down with their scripts, no? That's the distinction I was referring to about oral history. Not that they couldn't write! And again, I'm not necessarily saying that a written historical perspective is at all superior: we've already agreed that Western writing can be very dubious, but again, I'd like to know of any more reliable alternatives extant...


"Eddie" referenced the idea of whether or not Capoeira was African. What is interesting is that no one ever assumes the opposite until "proven otherwise." That it was created by persons of African descent is one bit of evidence that should be looked at before assumptions to the contrary are ever mentioned. He also mentioned a Tae Kwon Do instructor who noted Ladja's supposed "similarity" to Tae Kyon. Why mention this, since, clearly, beyond a superficial manner, the two are not related at all? One is African, the other is Korean. Since there were no known Koreans sent to Martinique, nor Africans known to have been sent to Korea (who may have practiced such African derived martial skills), why enter into a discussion with such a premise? What is the motive?That was Mickey, not Eddie! I've no idea what he's burbling on about, so ask him what his motive is! :D You've just mistaken Mickey for Eddie and asked me a question regarding his thinking! Be careful: don't lump us in together! ;) :o

And as to assumptions, why should we assume that something was African? On the other thread you've already laid claim to swastika, which are found throughout the world carved on rocks by the first people to carve anything, as are crosses, spirals, lozenges etc. You believe they are African in origin because I suspect you believe a lot of civilisation started in Africa. Fair enough. I believe they are part of human world culture which no-one can lay claim to. I don't really think you have any evidence claiming swastika as an African 'invention' yet you assume that people who disagree with that assumption are the 'bad guys' twisted by Western historical bias?

As to the rest of your post, it's great history and well-researched, I can see, and thank you for taking the time to write it up. But again, evidence that many African fighting arts use ducking and weaving type motion is not evidence that Western boxing is heavily influenced by any African arts.

I'll have a dig around to find descriptions by contemporaries complaining about the new-fangled fancy boxing styles after the boxing rule changes were introduced. Don't know what I'll find on the web.

And as you said, apologies if any of this seems at all heated. Please accept my assurances that they are not intended to be at all.

Cheers! :)

mickey
02-21-2006, 06:10 AM
Hi Mat,


The Korean Japanese thing is old news:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_people


By the way Mat, I was responding to danmyete's post about the Taekyon/Capoeria question. He took down his post while I was responding to it and then reposted it; so, it is out of sequence.

With regard to the religious link between West African religions and Shinto yes, I do agree that what you stated can be said of the other earlier religions. When you start research the origins of anything you start to find connectives and truths: largely because you are truly dealing with consciousness.

I see much of danmyete's comments to be a very positive step against the view put forth by Toynbee who wrote that Africans have NEVER contributed anything of value to civilization. Though he wrote that so long ago, those statements still shape the minds of historians who would rather contribute findings to extraterrestrial sources than to the people and civilization that happened to be there.


mickey

Mr Punch
02-21-2006, 07:58 AM
I stand corrected. :) Koreans have the Mongolian Spot too.

And Toynbee was plain old full of ****!

danmyete
02-21-2006, 04:11 PM
Greetings Mat,

Thanks for the reply.

As to what extant resource is the most reliable, the idea that the validity of a tradition is equal to the degree to which it has been documented creates a faulty premise: that being things only exist, or come into being, upon the establishment of some form of textual reference.

Things come into being, however, when they come into being, whether or not we are made privy to this fact or not. In essence, currently, there is no extant methodology to accurately record anything, since any of the present methodologies requires the assumption that humans are incapable of dishonesty once they have acquired academic credentials and sponsorship.

As to the assumptions of African traditions being classed as such, it is not so much a matter of accepting, without reservation, the Africanity of a thing but, rather, a check against the Western, distorted, approach to automatically denounce/place into scrutiny the African origins of something as a matter of course. No one, for example, automatically assumes the non-French/non-European origins of Savate. Yet some of these same individuals do not hesitate to "meditate" on the "supposed" African origins of Capoeira.

As to who said what, it was actually Tvebak who raised the question of Tae Kyon realtive to Ladja and the African origins of Capoeira, not Mickey. Eddie has also weighed in on the Africaness of the things discussed herein. So my comments have been rightfully addressed to him as well.

As to laying claims to things, if memory serves me correctly, I said that it was my opinion that the Swastika has its origins in Africa. No where did I say this was verified fact. This is not the same thing as textual sources, being passed of as academically sound, making bold claims about "non-literate" African "oral" traditions or the "non-African" origins of Capoeira (as does the text on Capoeira entitled "Ring Of Liberation," for example).

No where did I say that to disagree with me means that you are twisted, etc. Distorting African history, which is exactly what I was referencing, is twisted. If any individual engages in this practice, then he/she is individually twisted. I do not recall calling you twisted, so your point is without basis here.

The Swastika has been found as part ancient African Saharan traditions, at a time when Africans roamed the area when it was closer, in appearance to the savanna areas to the south. It is linked to the Akan Gold weights, which also feature this symbol, and the African script of which this symbol is a part has been noted in a book by an African scholar whose name now escapes me but whose book was reviewed in Dr. Ivan Van Sertima's Black's In Science text on African indigenous sciences, etc. I shall dig up the name. This was partially the basis for my OPINION.

As to contemporary Western boxing, I have seen no evidence of the bobbing and weaving, more elusive footwork being an initial part of the pre-African involvement variant we have come to presently class as boxing. The bobbing and weaving and elaborate feigning are also found in American Football as the stutter step, Jukin', etc. The trickiness in combat, in the African context, as scene in Capoeira, Danmye, Mani, et al, was carried over into the latter sporting traditions in which Africans/African-Diasporans became involved.

And, no, Africans did record their histories, traditions, etc. in their scripts.

Thanks for the discourse.

Eddie
02-25-2006, 10:18 AM
Polka has distinct characteristics which can give clues to the origin, as well as documented history and musical influence. My idea of break dancing, is your typical B Boy style, allot of ground work combined with allot of acrobatic work. I mentioned in the other forum that Capoeria Angola is probably closer to African tradition than others, but what I see as Capoeira Angola being done here is much different to the Capoeira Angola elsewhere. I’m talking posture mostly.

African dancing very seldom goes down to the ground in the way that break dancers (and Angola) would do, and typical B Boy would focus allot on posture and form, where as in African traditional culture, posture and form is seen and used in a different manner. Legs are almost always bend with a very distinct emphasis on hip movements. Most importantly, a very deep emphasis on the “ African rhythm” (its all in the bum they say).

Modern African dancing such as Pantsula and Kwasa Kwasa all have those characteristics, and one can clearly see those are from African decent. Although, if we do have to get racial here, the black kids seem to pick up break dancing much quicker than the white kids, I get the feeling it has much more to do with cultural inhibitions than anything else. We always joke about the African rhythm down here (black and white people alike all joke around saying white men can dance), but if we are honest with ourselves, physiologically we are all the same. Doubt there is a Rhythm gene or chromosome in our bodies.

Careful not to assume that all white people in South Africa are racists. Racism has very little to do with ethnicity, I say it has more to do with insecurities, and it knows no boundaries. The biggest racists I know are discriminating between their own ethnic groups. I read allot of racism in danmayets posts, whether or not it was intentional is irrelevant. I suppose its part of our human nature, and we’d all be lying to argue this. Having said that, I am probably one of the most racial tolerant persons you will ever know, my comments about Break dancing not being from Africa has little to do with African Intelligence or anything like what you may suggest. Its more of a patroitical statement than anything else I guess, so we should nor mistake everything for racism. If we are secure enough about our selves, and we accept and acknowledge our own strengths and weaknesses, we probably would never shout racism to begin with.

Traditional African fighting arts could not have been structured in the same way as Asian martial arts have been. There are way too many cultural obstacles for that. Also, traditions was handed down orally; mostly though song and dance. Having said that, I never claimed that African fighting arts did not exist, I also never claimed the effectiveness of them either. I did tell you to look at systems such as the Piper system and I even gave clues to other styles.

In the same way that Chinese Martial Arts may follow mythical traditions and forms such as dragon, panther and tiger, African arts would probably follow the mindset of a snake. Sneakiness – would probably be the keyword here, and that is what makes those arts effective.

One can clearly see the influence of African Culture on African fighting when you look at the style that most modern African boxers (pro boxing) take on. I am not referring to Ali or Lewes or Tyson, refer to fighters such as Cassius Balloy and Baby Jake, or Dingaan Tobela. If you look at their fighting manner, you might get a clue to the rhythm I am referring to.

With all of my posts I have never denied the existence or effectiveness of African fighting arts or African traditions. On the contrary. You should also investigate a “ style” called ‘ form style’. Its something that is being used by African street kids, mostly in the Cape Town area. Again it has allot to do with rhythm, and everything to do with sneakiness. In conclusion, African fighting is much like JKD (and mixed martial arts). You fight to win, Noma Kanjani (no matter what). Pretty much what we all say, innit?

Eddie
02-25-2006, 10:27 AM
Greetings Mat,
As to contemporary Western boxing, I have seen no evidence of the bobbing and weaving, more elusive footwork being an initial part of the pre-African involvement variant we have come to presently class as boxing. The bobbing and weaving and elaborate feigning are also found in American Football as the stutter step, Jukin', etc. The trickiness in combat, in the African context, as scene in Capoeira, Danmye, Mani, et al, was carried over into the latter sporting traditions in which Africans/African-Diasporans became involved.

And, no, Africans did record their histories, traditions, etc. in their scripts.

Thanks for the discourse.

Bobbing and weaving is very much part of African fighting strategy. Perhaps not as refined as what we see in modern boxing, refer to my cultural inhibitions note, but it is probably one of the key elements in African combat forms. If you look at systems such as Piper and “ Form style”, you will note the importance of this.

Which African scripts are you referring to? Which language did they use? Please can you post a link to info on that matter for me?

Mr Punch
02-27-2006, 12:31 AM
As to what extant resource is the most reliable, the idea that the validity of a tradition is equal to the degree to which it has been documented creates a faulty premise:(snip)...the assumption that humans are incapable of dishonesty once they have acquired academic credentials and sponsorship.Again agreed, and since we are agreed on the inherent untrustworthiness of academic assumptions, I think you can dispense with mentioning it every post! :) Unless you feel there is something that I'm missing? I do feel there is something that you're missing: an answer to which source do you feel is the most reliable extant historical source. I agree that (Western/any) written sources are not necessarily reliable or valid, I'm just asking you for your opinion on what sources you think are the most reliable sources you have.

And,
aside from Desch-Obi's book, which sounds good and authorative despite being a written source of presumably no greater repute than any other academic source, where are you getting your information? Please note this is dfifferent to the first question.


As to the assumptions of African traditions being classed as such, it is not so much a matter of accepting, without reservation, the Africanity of a thing but, rather, a check against the Western, distorted, approach to automatically denounce/place into scrutiny the African origins of something as a matter of course. No one, for example, automatically assumes the non-French/non-European origins of Savate. Interesting assumptions there yourself. While I agree that just because something is a written academic resource doesn't make it reliable, I don't agree with your implication that ALL Western approaches are distorted. I mean, sure, in ALL Western, Eastern or African approaches there is bound to be human bias, yet you are sounding dismissive of ALL Western sources BECAUSE they are Western sources.

As to your supposition about the 'no one' assuming non-French/European origins of savate, I assumed there was an ongoing debate about it: AND I have always assumed it came from Africa, or at least somewhere other than Europe simply because of the emphasis on high kicks, which pretty much no other European art seems to share. Most of the literature I read a couple of years ago (when I last looked up the origins of savate) said the same thing. I would suggest that either there is a comprehensive movement to hide the non-European origins of savate or you are reading selectively.

Anyway, I would suggest that your assumption that no one assumes automatically that savate is not European in origin is wrong.

At the same time, I would politely suggest that as savate is only found as 'savate' in France, people are justified in assuming (rightly or wrongly) that it is European, at least until other evidence has been presented.

Furthermore, however much neither you nor I trust the nature of some of the Western-style literature, it does remain somewhat of a benchmark for evidence. If some geezer down the pub tells me savate is from Vietnam, it is not my being racist or even biased not to accept it at face value. The point of fact is that anybody who wants to make an academic assumption and back it up does the research and then publishes a paper somewhere with sources. Maybe those sources are 'some geezer down the pub' in which case they may well be dubious, and maybe those sources are 'some geezer sitting round a Masai campfire' in which case although they may well be dubious in many cases I think contrary to your assumption, they would probably be given more benefit of the doubt than 'some geezer down the pub'!


And, no, Africans did record their histories, traditions, etc. in their scripts.OK. But are you talking about recording history or recording legend? Admittedly the dividing line is sometimes moot. In Northern Europe we have the Sagas for example which have some very important information about the writers' culture and way of life and some historical events. But they also have stories about fights with barrow-wights and ogres. These are rightly treated as legend, not history. Anyway, I'm just asking out of interest, not trying to trip you up.

Thank you.

danmyete
03-01-2006, 09:02 AM
I will reply to the rest later. Let me hit some of your points.

First, Where I utilize sources to corroborate a given subject, it will be to what degree it adheres to corroborating factors known to 'informants' of a given subject it self, say, in the area of culture (since that is the subject matter with which we are currently dealing). For example, DANMYE, the African derived art from Martinique, has sources from Western observers of the plantation institution there which, albeit not as detailed as that of the practitioners themselves, nevertheless can be corroborated by the narratives of Danmyetes themselves. Now, Western accounts of things African have by and large exhibited a rather distorted view of African cultures via motives ranging the gamet of agendas. Classifying Africans as inferior to other peoples, chiefly Europeans, is a good enough example. I'll site a specific example in the next entry. It has been, for example, most notible that the Apartheid Gvernment hid the African ruins of the "kingdom" of Masungubwe while asserting that Africans in the area arrived at the same time as "whites" there and that these Africans never developed a society of note in the region.

The use of documentation as a means of probaganda is a paradigm given much attention in the West. Attributing all non-European achievement either to cultural diffusion from foreign sources deemed respectible to Western academia, or to, even more ridiculous, Extraterrestial sources, can all be found in Western literature. None other than Carl Sagan has had the audacity to attribute the Dogon "astronomical" knowledge of Sirius B to a non-existent white theologian who supposedly transmitted this most sacred knowledge, knowledge not given to European student Marcel Griaule (author of 'The Pale Fox') until the latter stages of his Bush training, to the Dogon.

I know Desch personally. His work is field tested, with photograghs to augment his research. He is a linguist with extensive knowledge of proto-languages, etc. He is a student of Yale African Studies Prof. Robert Farris Thomas and Dr. Fu Kiau Bunseki, a Congolese scholar with bush training into at least three African traditional lodges, the Lemba, Kimba and Khimpasi...

T o Be Cont'd...

danmyete
03-01-2006, 09:17 AM
Cont'd...

Perhaps if the West had no history of distorting 'history,' an environment of mistrust would not have developed. However, this is not the case.

When I hear that Africans have had no scriptural tradition, and that we are largely an oral society (as in more than others), this clearly eminates from distortions which, at least initially, sprang from an agenda perculiar to the West.

I am not one who is an internet guru, so you'll have to excuse me for not knowing how to post things from other sites here.

If you do a search on the Bassa Script, you will come up with the Cornell Univ study of African scripts launched by Prof. Ayele Bekerie, an African from Ethiopia who has made an exhaustive study of these. He discusses how these scripts were discouraged by the colonial regimes in favor of "their" scripts. The Bassa eventually fell into disuse or limited use.

The Shumom script invented by King Njoya, of the Bamum, recorded the daily lives of his people before being banned by the French.

The Nsibidi script of the Ngbe (leopard) society recorded its lodges transactions, and is actually ancestor of the script used by the Abakwa (leopard) society of African-Cuban culture.

More To Come...

danmyete
03-01-2006, 09:29 AM
As to the origins issue, relative to location, consider how the vast majority of "researchers" who initially viewed the ruins of the Great Zimbabwe claimed all manner of NON-INDIGENOUS origins for that ancient society. Given that it existed in Africa, by your analogy, its African origins should not have been automatically questioned. The point is, most people do not question the origins of a European practice automatically. There is NO automatic, across the board assumption that it is other than European. There is the assumption that the script that we are using right now is English, Western, European, when all accounts seem to point back to Phoenicia and, then, Khemit/Egypt. This has largely occurred because of literature making such, or inferring such claims.

Eddie
03-02-2006, 02:03 PM
Danmayete
Your take on African history seems seriously flawed. You mention references to historical and academical studies and finds, but fail to give proper cross references which we can actually investigate ourselves. Linking information on website in a post is simple, you simply copy and paste the URL from the top of your explorer bar, into the message body of the post. You know how to make posts here, so that should be a pretty easy thing to do.

I am very interesting to see the written scripts from Africa, and I am even more interested to see what language and writing method was used to record these documents. I am aware of some Arabic and Egyptian scripts which contains reference to African history and culture, and you are right these do come from the Ethiopian region. If those are truly from Ethiopia, it should be very influenced by middle eastern culture and views, as we all know how prominent the Islamic culture in that region really is. If you talk central and southern Africa (you make reference to Congo and Zimbabwe), you need to be more specific and point out specific findings and documentation.



Classifying Africans as inferior to other peoples, chiefly Europeans, is a good enough example. I'll site a specific example in the next entry. It has been, for example, most notible that the Apartheid Gvernment hid the African ruins of the "kingdom" of Masungubwe while asserting that Africans in the area arrived at the same time as "whites" there and that these Africans never developed a society of note in the region.


Am I reading correctly, are you saying that the “ Apartheid government” hid the ruins of Mapungubwe (its spelled and pronounced with a P btw, not an S)? Can you point me to your references on this topic? The findings at Mapungubwe is also well documented, your claims however, is not. It is not sure exactly which cultural group the people from this “ kingdom” of Mapungubwe came from, and there are proof that the “ whites” and “ blacks” from that area pretty much arrived in the area circa the same era. Last time I checked, the people from Limpopo are Sotho, who are descendants from the Basotho people, indigenous to the Eastern Freestate Area –South from Mapungubwe. No one ever claimed that these African groups never developed a notable society in this region, we are merely asking for proof of written accounts of their history and traditions as preserved by them, during that time. Of that, I have not seen any concrete proof or evidence that suggest in their favor.



The use of documentation as a means of probaganda is a paradigm given much attention in the West.

Agreed, but please prove your other claims with the necessary back ups.



Attributing all non-European achievement either to cultural diffusion from foreign sources deemed respectible to Western academia, or to, even more ridiculous, Extraterrestial sources, can all be found in Western literature. None other than Carl Sagan has had the audacity to attribute the Dogon "astronomical" knowledge of Sirius B to a non-existent white theologian who supposedly transmitted this most sacred knowledge, knowledge not given to European student Marcel Griaule (author of 'The Pale Fox') until the latter stages of his Bush training, to the Dogon.


Please inform me what this “ Bush training” is you are referring to? You posts also seem very western to me, whats the difference?



I know Desch personally. His work is field tested, with photograghs to augment his research. He is a linguist with extensive knowledge of proto-languages, etc. He is a student of Yale African Studies Prof. Robert Farris Thomas and Dr. Fu Kiau Bunseki, a Congolese scholar with bush training into at least three African traditional lodges, the Lemba, Kimba and Khimpasi...

Once again, you are reminded that there are many many different cultures that are practiced in Africa. Most of these different ethnic groups have very little time for each other, hence all the wars in Africa over the last few centuries. All internal conflict between native ethnic groups. I’m curious as to the location and cultural back ground of those “ lodges” you mention. Please state more reference to this topic if you can.



Perhaps if the West had no history of distorting 'history,' an environment of mistrust would not have developed. However, this is not the case.

Agreed, but please state reference to proof that counter their claims. I’m a big conspiracy theory junky, even the slightest hint of proof will be suffice.



When I hear that Africans have had no scriptural tradition, and that we are largely an oral society (as in more than others), this clearly eminates from distortions which, at least initially, sprang from an agenda perculiar to the West.
Once again you are reminded that you are in fact, American, and not African. Your African American forefathers probably had scriptural tradition We were discussion the point that Africa had no written recording of their culture and history, until proven otherwise, there is little reason to argue over this issue. The evidence should speak for itself. A large part of Africa was never colonized (or to lesser extend than others), so there are bound to be proof to back up your claims.


As to the origins issue, relative to location, consider how the vast majority of "researchers" who initially viewed the ruins of the Great Zimbabwe claimed all manner of NON-INDIGENOUS origins for that ancient society.
There were in fact clues that pointed towards foreign cultures, more dominantly Chinese and Indian origin. If you lived in Africa, you should have been aware of this. We get bombarded with factual snippets of these findings on a daily basis.


Given that it existed in Africa, by your analogy, its African origins should not have been automatically questioned.
I did not see anyone here who posted anything that suggest they think that way. I did, however, have an argument with YOU about my “ Africanness” in the other forums.



There is the assumption that the script that we are using right now is English, Western, European, when all accounts seem to point back to Phoenicia and, then, Khemit/Egypt. This has largely occurred because of literature making such, or inferring such claims.

And this statement proves your ignorance. History is well recorded. Im sure you will find prove to indicate otherwise.

My take on this all … you seem to be the biggest racist around. Your insecurities about your ethnicity is blinding you. Your quest to find the origins of your roots, is admirable, but at the same time, you seem a little naďve about what you may have learned. Unless you can back up most of your claims with solid evidence, it will remain part of the greater ideology you seem to hang onto. You have serious issues with race, probably your way of hiding your insecurities.

You still have not answered me, even though I answered your questions about this … Have you ever been to Africa? If so, where and for how long? Apart from your seemingly academical reference on the topic matter, what makes you an authority of African culture? In your posts you write a lot, but say very little.

danmyete
03-02-2006, 04:10 PM
http://www.library.cornell.edu/africana/Writing_Systems/Welcome.html
http://www.library.cornell.edu/africana/Writing_Systems/List_of_Scripts.html
http://www.bcecartoons.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=505&sid=2ed2f4568528095356017c55c961a97d


I'll reply to the rest in sections.

danmyete
03-02-2006, 04:20 PM
http://www.africawrites.com/thismonth10.html

danmyete
03-02-2006, 04:31 PM
African martial performative "dance."

http://www.africawrites.com/thismonth1.html
http://www.africawrites.com/thismonth2.htmlhttp://www.africawrites.com/thismonth2.html
http://www.africawrites.com/thismonth3.htmlhttp://www.africawrites.com/thismonth7.html
http://www.africawrites.com/thismonth4.html
http://www.africawrites.com/thismonth8.html
http://www.africawrites.com/infocusv2p10.html

danmyete
03-02-2006, 04:38 PM
http://www.archaeology.org/9807/abstracts/africa.html
http://www.safrica.info/ess_info/sa_glance/history/mapungubwe.htm


I'll respond later to your other comments. Thanks for the procedure for pasting to

danmyete
03-02-2006, 05:11 PM
http://www.baruch.cuny.edu/wsas/departments/history/faculty/desch_obi.html

Eddie
03-03-2006, 07:54 AM
thank you. I will take some time to go through all these sites. will post my comments later

danmyete
03-03-2006, 09:58 PM
http://way.net/creole/drumsandpower.html

danmyete
03-03-2006, 10:15 PM
http://blog.savannahgetaways.net/public/blog/102272

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