Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting (and Other Martial Arts)
Location: Online, via Zoom, Nuyorican Poets Cafe (236 E 3rd St, New York, NY)
Co-sponsors: Department of Anthropology, Harvard University , Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University Asia Center
After the Dragon: Asias/Africas in New York Speaker Series
Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting (and Other Martial Arts) is a conversation between Maryam Aziz, Justin Winley, and Dina Asfaha about African and African American martial artists and the Afro Asian connections developed through martial arts practices. This conversation will be held at Nuyorican Poets Cafe, an East Village institution that has hosted poetry, music, theater and visual arts events since 1973 (www.nuyorican.org).
Maryam (Mar-ree-yum) Aziz (Uh-Zeez), they/them/theirs pronouns, is an Assistant Professor of African American Studies in the Department of American Ethnic Studies at the University of Washington. Their first book asks how folks who practiced unarmed self-defense and martial arts contributed to Black Power organizing and shifting ideas about liberation, abolition, and gender norms. It also traces how the learning of martial arts was facilitated by U.S. militarism during the Cold War. In 2022, they received the V.P. Franklin Legacy Journal of African American History Award from the Association for the Study of African American Life for their article, “They Punch Black: They Punched Black: Martial Arts, Black Arts, and Sports in the Urban North and West, 1968-1979.”’ Their work was showcased in the 2017-2018 exhibit, “Black Power!, ” at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. As a scholar activist, Aziz regularly teaches radically inclusive self-defense classes. They have written for the Washington Post, and further insight into their work can be seen in publications such as Teen Vogue and Mic or heard in Podcasts such as Burn It All Down.
Justin Winley is a Harlem native and recent graduate of Pace University's film department with a lifelong interest in the history, practice, and culture of martial arts. In February of 2022 he received his black sash in Jeet Kune Do principles at the Garcia Gung Fu & Jujutsu Institute in East Harlem, NY.
IG: @_winley_ and @garciainstitute
Dina M. Asfaha is a William Fontaine Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, completing her doctorate in anthropology. Her dissertation focuses on the underground hospital established during the Eritrean Armed Struggle for Independence against Ethiopia (1961-1991), how it laid the foundation for contemporary healthcare in the country, and how Eritreans refer to their clandestine habitat as a means of articulating national aspirations today.
Moderator: Maya Singhal, Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Anthropology, Harvard University
Join us in person at Nuyorican Poets Cafe (236 E 3rd St, New York, NY / Doors 7pm)
Or via Zoom here or use webinar ID: 968 7262 1038
Other events in the series are:
Sept 10, 2022, 12:00 p.m. EDT, Cooking from Here: Food in the Chinese Diaspora
Oct 3, 2022, 06:30 p.m. EDT, Brooklyn to Beijing: Black People, Black Culture in China
Oct 19, 2022, 10:00 a.m. EDT, Asian Street Style
Nov 9, 2022, 06:30 p.m. ET, Afro Asia Beats