Miscellaneous Reflection #2


One of the biggest things about being a foreigner in China is that you tend to stick out. There just isn’t anything you can do as a Caucasian to not stick out. It also means that people make presumptions about you, one of the biggest being that you can’t speak Chinese. While at times this […]

A Diamond in the Rough


Over the course of my stay in China one of the greatest things I enjoyed about the culture was trying all the food. It in many ways reflects my own cultural heritage and upbringing with its emphasis on the importance of food, that I regard sampling the local fair as an essential part of experiencing […]

Fencing and the Chinese View Towards Sports

Map Of Vango Fencing and the Surrounding Area

Intro This project was originally conceived as an investigation into how Chinese people and Chinese culture approached and viewed sports, and in what way the sport of fencing had been able to fit into that framework. As Olympic fencing is clearly, due to its history and origin, a western sport, I decided it would be […]

The Spirit of Competition


While my first post was mainly focused on my first impressions of the Vango sports facility and it’s institutional culture, this post will be more focused on the culture of sport and competition in China is a whole. First of the question of why Vango is located where it is must be answered. After the […]

Western Sports in China


My field site is the Vango Fencing facility located within the Beijing National Olympic Sports Center. It is one of four different facilities the organization has in China and the only one located in Beijing according to its website: http://www.vangosports.com/en/index.asp. Originally I had wanted to study the relationship between sports culture and university students, but […]

Research Project Proposal

My research project will be focused on exploring the place competitive sports has in the culture of Chinese Universities, and role these sports play in the lives of students. My plan is to do so by examining the Tsinghua University fencing team. One of the biggest problems I’ve had with perusing the idea of studying […]

Brave New World for Athletes

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/2008/2007-06/22/content_900280.htm The article I found is about the change in the culture of athletic training in China. It uses Tsinghua University as the model for the change and interviews several people from the university including someone on the fencing team. The previous model of state training for sports is brought under fire for several high […]

Fencing: Lei wins for China as European giants fall

  http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/31/us-oly-fenc-femifo-wrap-day-idUSBRE86U1Q720120731 The article I choose to respond to is about how China and several other non-western nations challenged western dominance in fencing in the London Olympics. The article naturally focuses on the gold medal winner in foil, Lei Sheng and a brief overview of his journey to Olympic gold. It also briefly touches on […]

Chinese fencing

To be honest I haven’t been able to really come up with a topic that I really like. For now though I’m thinking that it would be fun to study the culture of fencing in China. As a sport that really descends from the western tradition of sword fighting I am curious how and even […]

Josiah Depaoli

你好! My Name is Josiah Depaoli (戴約賽). I am a freshman at William and Mary planning to major in economics and minor in history. I’m looking forward to improving my language ability in Chinese as well as getting to meet knew people and learn firsthand about a different culture.