themes and issues

Fanning, dancing, fighting

Fans however were not only used in hot weather but also in different cultural and social contexts, like Japanese dances performed by geishas, or in the military, as the Japanese war fans.

“A WAR fan?” many of you will ask. Precisely. 🙂

A war fan was originally an alternative weapon used by the samurai, mainly to defend himself when he could not use his sword. War fans were of different types and form. Some were used for signalling, others as real weapons. They were made of materials like iron, wood, brass or bronze, and  looked like everyday harmless objects that samurais used to carry in their belts. But if necessary, as in the case of an ambush, war fans could be used to avoid arrows or to attack enemies.

The art of fighting with war fans is still practised in martial arts, and is really fascinating. Have a look at this VIDEO (click to open new window), showing a n incredible War Fan Kata performance (a kata is a combination of moves that simulate attack and defense in many martial arts) at a martial arts championship.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s