The Guardian looks at the links between kung-fu and black culture in the US in this fascinating documentary.
During the 70s, black people in America, especially New York, became obsessed with kung-fu films. You could get cheap tickets for those movies at the time and thousands of people would watch movies from the Far East every weekend. But what was the appeal? Surely the life of the average Chinese kung-fu master and working-class African-Americans were worlds apart.
Surprisingly the two groups had more in common than you might think. A lot of the plot lines of the kung-fu movies were about oppressed groups who fought against discrimination. For a lot of black Americans, they could really relate to the issues in these films faced by the main characters. Also, later on black actors actually took leading roles in some of the pictures, boosting their popularity. The long term effect of this influence solidified itself through Hip Hop, with groups like the Wu-Tang Clan being a great example of the Asian influence on black culture and music that happened over the 20th century.
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