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David A. Hall, one of today's foremost experts on Japanese combative culture, combines hands-on experience in a wide variety of martial traditions with an academic and religious background to produce this landmark work. The Encyclopedia of Japanese Martial Arts is an exhaustive, impeccably researched reference offering information about everything there is to know on the subject, from adauchi (a vendetta) to zanshin (state of focused vigilance before, during, and after executing a technique or combative form). The volume opens with several sections to help make using the Encyclopedia as efficient and effective as possible: Abbreviations, Quick Guide to Weapons and Systems, Historical Eras, guides to the Entries and Lineage Charts, and A Note on the Japanese Language and Communication Style. The Encyclopedia itself, which runs for more than 625 pages and contains around 4,000 entries arranged alphabetically with concise definitions, covers all aspects the many different martial arts that have developed in Japan. Readers will find entries on hundreds of classical martial arts schools and over 50 detailed lineages of these schools; over 300 combative systems; the master martial artists (both ancient and modern); and the roles played by Buddhism, Taoism, Shintoism, and Shugendo in shaping the spiritual and cultural lives of Japanese warriors. Following the main portion of the work are several Appendices (Traditional East Asian Numbering Systems and Ancient Period Military Organisation), as well as a Selected Bibliography; and character indexes (General, Chinese, English, and Sanskrit) containing around 6,000 terms. With its vast wealth of information and practical, user-friendly organisation, The Encyclopedia of Japanese Martial Arts is sure to become the essential reference for the beginning martial artist seeking an introduction to the basics, as well as for the advanced student who wants a deeper understanding of the historical, spiritual and combative origins of the many different disciplines and schools. Additionally, the book is perfect for scholars and researchers -who will appreciate the access to material previously unavailable in English- as well as for reference libraries and Asian studies and language departments.
David A. Hall is a recognised authority who has been involved with Japanese martial arts for almost 50 years. He has a doctorate in Buddhist Studies and Military History and is an ordained Buddhist monk. He lived in Japan studying martial arts for 15 years and now lives in the U.S. where he continues to be active in martial arts circles. Dr. Hall's academic and religious background has allowed him to explore aspects of Japanese combative culture inaccessible to most. He is the author of many highly respected books in the martial and Buddhist fields.