Monday, February 10, 2014

Bubishi A Close Look Redoux Part 8

Revisiting Bubushi Drawings of the 48 Self Defense Techniques

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water, the Bubushi keeps returning to my focus.

I'd like to repeat a portion of the post from Mr. Joseph Blow on Cyber Dojo.
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 1999 07:54:57 -0800 (PST):

"For those of you who read Japanese, the publisher Beesubooru Magajin (Baseball Magazine) has out a translation of the Bubushi by Tadahiko Ohtsuka. In some places, Ohtsuka has included the original Chinese text (retyped) to
permit readers to get nuances themselves. "

"The pictures differ from those included in both McCarthy's and Alexander's, and I tend to think that all of them drew their own. In some cases, the arm positions vary from McCarthy, leading to a different idea for application. "
I was able, this weekend past, to revisit the copy of the 1934 Mabuni Kenwa text on Sepai, 'Sepai No Kenkyu Goshijutsu Hiden Karate-do Kempo'. Specifically on the issue of the 48 Self Defense Techniques, I compared the drawings shown by Mabuni to those of the Armstrong/Penland text and the McCarthy Text. 

I can now go into deeper comparison of the 48 Self Defense Techniques in these separate publications.
First issue, the Mabuni Kenwa text only shows 28 of the 48 Drawings.

Second issue, the Armstrong/Penland drawings are almost identical to those in Mabuni's text. They are redrawn by a hand with less finesse than Mabuni's version (I'm sure more for a darker copy for printing), but there is no essential difference in the drawings to my eye. That would lead me to assume that Alexander/Penland's entire set are based on ONE Okinawan version of the Bubushi.

The Alexander/Penland and the McCarthy versions are in the same order. As far as I can determine tecnique1 in Alexander/Penland is the same as technique 1 in McCarthy, and so forth.

The Mabuni drawings are not in the same order.

For convenience of other researchers, here is my comparison of Bubushi Technique traditions.
Alexander/Penland Mabuni Kenwa

McCarthy # Page #
---------------------- ---------------
3 160 *
4 152
5 171
7 165
8 155
9 159
10 168
13 148 *
14 154
15 158
16 173 *
19 175 **
20 169
24 163
25 157
26 172 **
27 166
30 151 **
31 164 **
32 156 **
34 161
35 167 ***
37 174
38 153
39 149 *
40 170 **
43 162 *
46 150

While the Alexander/Penland and McCarthy translations apparently use the same order for the 48 Self Defense Techniques, there are differences between the techniques shown. Of course I cannot determine whether this was due to the artist's efforts, or different original source Bubushi traditions.

In my comparison of those drawings to Mabuni Kenwa's drawings, I've indicated the differences with '*'. With one * being minor or perspective changes and '***' being very different representations of the techniques involved (IMHO).
I have not compared the 20 drawings not shown by Mabuni. between Alexander/Penland and McCarthy.

I do infer that based on the 28 Mabuni drawings shown, Alexander/Penlands are almost exact copies from the same source as Mabuni.

Due to differences between that tradition and the one shown by McCarthy, I assume his drawings come from a different tradition.

Again, let me urge that this is not an evaluation of Good or Bad, but rather an evaluation of Similarity and Difference, based on Physical Comparison.

I have no knowledge of any inaccuracies in textual translation in either text, and am assuming both are correct, but from different Bubushi traditions.

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