The Current State and Future of Women’s Kendo in Europe as seen in the France Kendo Open

by Robin Jakuen On Christmas Day 2022, a post from France was received on the Facebook group Ladies Kendo Only by Johanna Nowark (Bordeaux, 2-dan). “Yet again, at the France Kendo Open 2023, women 7-dan are expected to fight alongside women 4/5/6-dan, while men 7-dan have their own category apart from the rest of theContinue reading “The Current State and Future of Women’s Kendo in Europe as seen in the France Kendo Open”

Design Competition – Kendogu for Women: Results

デザイン公募「女性用剣道具」 結果発表 English The Design Competition’ Kendogu for Women’, launched on 15 February this year, received four entries. First, we would like to thank all the entrants from the bottom of our hearts. The editorial team was impressed by the well-thought-out concepts and the high quality of the drawings for each entry. We also feelContinue reading “Design Competition – Kendogu for Women: Results”

Onna Bugeisha: Women and the Naginata

by Curtis Abu Women and their role as warriors in the history of Japan is an interesting topic I’d like to touch upon. There are many literature, plays, and artworks of onna bugeisha1, or female warriors in English, that portray their feats. Depending on the time period, onna bugeisha are said to have had theirContinue reading “Onna Bugeisha: Women and the Naginata”

Nakano Takeko – the last Samurai of Aizu

Transcribed by Paul Budden Nakano Takeko (中野 竹子, April 1847 – 16 October 1868)  Nakano Takeko was a female warrior of the Aizu Domain, who took part in and died during the Boshin War. Her weapon of choice for which was famous was the naginata. She was the leader of an improvised group of female combatants, which independently fought duringContinue reading “Nakano Takeko – the last Samurai of Aizu”

Japanese swordswoman Nakazawa Koto (1839-1927)

Transcribed by Paul Budden There is little written about Nakazawa Koto in English. But according to Wikipedia and other Japanese sources, she was born in Kōzuke Province (modern Gunma Prefecture) in 1839.  Having been taught martial arts in her childhood, she became very skilled in Kenjutsu. Her skill with the naginata surpassed even that of her father, Magouemon, who taught her. She also studied Hoshin-Ryu kobudo and usedContinue reading “Japanese swordswoman Nakazawa Koto (1839-1927)”

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