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Fear is the highest fence.

After years of debates, notoriously contentious public meetings, and the looming specter of a civil rights lawsuit, a federal mediation agreement between the Town of Hamden and the City of New Haven, Connecticut resulted in the removal of a 10-foot chain-link fence that separated New Haven's West Rock public housing projects from Hamden's Woodin Street neighborhood for nearly half a century. NYT's Benjamin Mueller reports: In Connecticut, Breaking a Barrier Between a Suburb and Public Housing. [more inside]
posted by divined by radio on Jul 14, 2014 - 9 comments

Three of you, fifty of them... FIGHT

Have you ever wanted to see three expert fencers fighting fifty novices? Of course you have, even if only after you read that question. (via kottke)
posted by Etrigan on May 1, 2014 - 65 comments

Top Myths of Renaissance Martial Arts

The diverse range of misconceptions and erroneous beliefs within historical fencing studies today is considerable. But there are perhaps some myths that are more common, and more pervasive, than others. This webpage presents an ongoing project that will continually try in an informal and condensed manner to help address some of these mistaken beliefs.
posted by cthuljew on Jul 25, 2013 - 39 comments

Because I know something you don't know.

Wiktenauer is a catalog of fighting manuals and other primary sources related to historical European martial arts.
posted by zamboni on Dec 26, 2012 - 11 comments

Edged weapons are not pretend lightsabers.

Today's I09 has a guest column by John Clements titled "Swordfighting: Not What You Think It Is." And it isn't. [more inside]
posted by Bunny Ultramod on Jun 15, 2012 - 72 comments

If More Gyms Had Sword Fighting Classes....

"I'm in a nondescript warehouse in Seattle, to which I've traveled so that award-winning science fiction novelists can demonstrate how they could cut me in half if they felt like it." i09 Talks to Neal Stephenson about working on the multi-author IP-experiment *thing* The Mongoliad and sword fighting as a heart-healthy hobby.
posted by The Whelk on Jun 3, 2012 - 29 comments

Knights in the snow.

Knights in the snow. Western martial artists Theresa Wendland and Davis Vader, of the Chicago Swordplay Guild, duel with longswords in the bitter cold of February in Chicago's Pulaski Park. Here's another video of her trouncing larger and stronger opponents indoors.
posted by Slap*Happy on Feb 4, 2011 - 39 comments

En Garde!

The marine flatworm Pseudobiceros hancockanus engages in penis fencing [video]. SFW, I guess, unless your boss is a super uptight nudibranch or something.
posted by dersins on Aug 15, 2007 - 26 comments

Schmiss and make up

A modern eyewitness account of secretive ritualized duelling known as "academic fencing". Its stylized format has changed little since Mark Twain observed it. Despite dubious legality it is alive and well in German universities. The raison d'être of this swordplay is the creation of a schmiss or duelling scar. These scars are considered by the bearers as a mark of courage and nobility, and by outsiders as an indication of semi-latent Nazi tendencies. In March a medical conference is beng held for the first time in Freiburg, for doctors who tend to duelling injuries.
posted by roofus on Feb 22, 2007 - 73 comments

Zagunis Gets the Gold!

Mariel Zagunis has become the first United States woman fencer to ever win a gold medal, the first US fencer to win a gold since Albertson Van Zo Post won an extinct event called Single Sticks in 1904, and the first US fencer to win any medal at all since Peter Westbrook in 1984. Zagunis fences Sabre, along with her fellow medal winner (and #1 world ranked womens saberist) Sada Jacobson and former medalist and current coach and philanthropist Peter Westbrook. Could this be the start of a new championship sabre squad in the US? Well, no, not if you look at the men's sabre results.
posted by Inkoate on Aug 18, 2004 - 33 comments

La Destreza

"The Spanish School of Swordsmanship, 'La Destreza,' is the most misunderstood subject in the history of fencing. It has been misrepresented by fencing scholars for the past one hundred years as an ineffectual and artificial system of swordsmanship full of absurdities. The intent of this article and others to follow is to present a clearer and more accurate picture of what 'La Destreza' is." 'La Destreza' was created by Jerónimo de Carranza in the 16th century. The system was featured in an episode of Highlander, and there are instructional videos.
posted by homunculus on Sep 3, 2003 - 14 comments

Fencing Sucks

No, seriously, they score by touching the opponent in the Valid Target Area. The touches are monitored electronically via wires coming out of the fencers' backs, similar to the technology used to control Dan Rather.
-from Dave Barry on Fencing in the humor section of Fencing Sucks.
posted by Shane on Jun 30, 2003 - 30 comments

En Garde!

The Armarium. Online Historical Fencing Manuals & Texts at the Association for the Renaissance Martial Arts (ARMA).
posted by misteraitch on Jun 14, 2003 - 2 comments

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