CERES Palais, room "Ruhrpott" (4.13)
Guest Lecture by Esther Berg-Chan (Frankfurt a.M.)
In the last couple of years we have witnessed the rise of ‘martial arts studies’ as a new and distinct field of academic inquiry. From the already existing research on ‘martial arts’ produced within different disciplinary contexts, an interdisciplinary conversation on martial arts has emerged. In this talk, I seek to unpack martial arts, religion, and their relation to each other from a religious studies perspective. Claiming martial arts as an object of religious studies, and in turn claiming that religious studies has the potential to produce valuable insights for the field of martial arts studies, might raise some eyebrows. The relation between and (maybe not coincidentally) the definition of both martial arts and religion is an issue of debate among both outside observers and practitioners. Consequently, it is this very relation that is under investigation in this talk drawing on both a discourse theoretical approach and on the perspective of material religion.