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    World Martial Arts Union

    http://womau.com/

    Just came across this organization online. On the face of it, WOMAU is a Korea-based UNESCO affiliate that exists to preserve traditional martial arts from various countries as "intangible cultural assets", which is all fine:

    The martial arts of a people is an important part of the cultural heritage of that people.

    Such martial arts, just like any other cultural heritage, should be preserved. Nevertheless, some of the traditional martial arts are sadly on the "endangered list".

    Some of them are already lost to the history, and some others are gradually but unknowingly receding into oblivion. Urgent is the need to make earnest efforts to stop the slippage and to try to preserve these cultural heritage of us all.

    Chungju, the ancient home of the oldest Korean martial arts tradition of Taekgyeon, to organize and play host to the first World Martial Arts Festival. in 1998. We have just witnessed the tenth annual event. The year 1998 will be remembered as a landmark-year by all those who are interested in or have a attachment for the martial arts. In October this year, created there was one more such landmark. The birth of the World Martial Arts Union(WoMAU) marked another turning point in the joint efforts of the world martial arts community. Representatives of 28 national martial arts organizations from 26 countries met in Chungju on October 1-2, at the time of the fifth Festival, and signed an agreement launching WoMAU. Upon signing the agreement, the representatives expressed their strong hope that the organization they were launching would effectively promote cooperation among its members and also would give Chungju World Martial Arts Festival international support so that it might grow into a major international event showing all things of martial arts.

    The WoMAU membership is open to all national and international martial arts organizations. Those that are not member yet are invited to join it. Martial arts do have many potentials to contribute to the bodily as well as the mental health of individual person and society and by extension to the peace of the world. For these reasons alone, the members of the world martial arts community are well advised to cooperate among them. I am positive about the increased role of Chungju World Martial Arts Festival and WoMAU to play for the advancement of all of these.

    Thank you for having read this message and wish you well.

    President
    ByungYong SOH
    Ambassador(ret.)
    ... but take a look at some of the styles and societies that make up the current membership, especially in the American and European categories: http://womau.org/xe/america and http://womau.org/xe/europe . The majority are, shall we say, "iffy".

    This is strongly reminiscent of the World Sokeship Council ...
    Check out the Bullshido.net Western Martial Arts Forum for all things Western, martial and arty.

    Bartitsu: the Gentlemanly Art of Self Defence (est. 1899)

    #2
    It doesn't look like they have very well defined criteria.

    Comment


      #3
      You ain't just whistlin' "Dixie" ...
      Check out the Bullshido.net Western Martial Arts Forum for all things Western, martial and arty.

      Bartitsu: the Gentlemanly Art of Self Defence (est. 1899)

      Comment


        #4
        If a martial art is endangered, it probably doesn't have that much to offer the world of martial arts.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by callum828 View Post
          If a martial art is endangered, it probably doesn't have that much to offer the world of martial arts.
          Except a lot of martial arts - especially the more ceremonial, less fighty ones -can be said to have some kind of cultural value which is worth preserving.

          Of course, I'm not sure how representative of Bulgarian traditions Bulgarian Kenpo is.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by callum828 View Post
            If a martial art is endangered, it probably doesn't have that much to offer the world of martial arts.
            I think there's a lot of cultural factors that can come into play. There could be a number of reasons that a perfectly good martial art can fall into disuse.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by CodosDePiedra View Post
              I think there's a lot of cultural factors that can come into play. There could be a number of reasons that a perfectly good martial art can fall into disuse.
              Such as?

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by callum828 View Post
                Such as?
                I think perhaps you should check out the WMA community sometime...

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by CrackFox View Post
                  Except a lot of martial arts - especially the more ceremonial, less fighty ones -can be said to have some kind of cultural value which is worth preserving.

                  Of course, I'm not sure how representative of Bulgarian traditions Bulgarian Kenpo is.
                  Meh, I've never bought into the whole 'cultural value' thing, it's so subjective. What could be 'culturally valuable' to one person could be completely worthless to everyone else.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by CrackFox View Post
                    Except a lot of martial arts - especially the more ceremonial, less fighty ones -can be said to have some kind of cultural value which is worth preserving.
                    You da man.

                    Of course, I'm not sure how representative of Bulgarian traditions Bulgarian Kenpo is.
                    Yep. I think their screening procedure could do with an overhaul.
                    Check out the Bullshido.net Western Martial Arts Forum for all things Western, martial and arty.

                    Bartitsu: the Gentlemanly Art of Self Defence (est. 1899)

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Lu Tze View Post
                      I think perhaps you should check out the WMA community sometime...
                      A brief google search hasn't given me any information on why 'perfectly good' martial arts in the WMA community are falling into disuse, care to enlighten me?

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by callum828 View Post
                        Such as?
                        Coming from a subjugated culture that is too busy making soccer balls all day to have time to practice their ancestral arts. Having a former warrior society become obsolete with no reason to maintain functional fighting skills. Pacifist ideologies casting an unfavorable feeling towards martial arts. Having an imperialist rule that outlaws indigenous cultural practices, particularly ones that teach how to fight and kill. Outlawing weapons that are the main focus of a fighting art. People not wanting their kids to get into an art with a social stigma for brawling. Those are a few off the top of my head. In all the examples, the effectiveness of the art is not the issue.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by CodosDePiedra View Post
                          Coming from a subjugated culture that is too busy making soccer balls all day to have time to practice their ancestral arts. Having a former warrior society become obsolete with no reason to maintain functional fighting skills. Pacifist ideologies casting an unfavorable feeling towards martial arts. Having an imperialist rule that outlaws indigenous cultural practices, particularly ones that teach how to fight and kill. Outlawing weapons that are the main focus of a fighting art. People not wanting their kids to get into an art with a social stigma for brawling. Those are a few off the top of my head. In all the examples, the effectiveness of the art is not the issue.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Ah, and you replied with a term taken from classical fencing, an art that has fallen into disuse.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by CodosDePiedra View Post
                              Ah, and you replied with a term taken from classical fencing, an art that has fallen into disuse.
                              If it's in the Olympics, can it really be said to have fallen into disuse? Or is modern fencing different from classical fencing?

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