Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Book Review: Lameco Eskrima --The Legacy of Edgar Sulite

Lameco Eskrima –The Legacy of Edgar Sulite, by David E. Gould. $29.05, paperback, 274 pp., Tambuli Media, Spring House PA.

This book, Lameco Eskrima, is largely a biography of Edgar Sulite, a prominent Filipino martial arts practitioner and teacher. The first 169 pages of this book deals with his life, his martial arts training, the development of his own style, a style he called Lameco Eskrima, and the legacy he left, and the influence he had on his students.

The remaining pages, pages 171 to 267, describe different parts and aspects of this art. In other words, they show Filipino martial artists facing off and possible attacks and responses. 
Some time ago, Mark Wiley, Publisher of this and many other interesting books on Filipino Martial Arts and I had a discussion over what readers today wish in a Filipino martial arts book. Essentially what he told me is that readers today are not as interested in books on physical techniques as they were in the days before the internet, youtube, and widely available videos of practitioners in action demonstrating or teaching techniques. These days, he explained, readers wish to use books to learn the sort of information that is not easily learned from a video, for instance, the history of an art and its lineage as well as stories of the lives and background of its prominent teachers.

Although I’m not completely sure if I agree, this book will be of great interest to those who do wish a book of that type. It does, for instance, get into great depth on the story of the life and background of Edgar Sulite, a prominent martial artist, as told by his students.  
There is also a section from pages 107 to 170 where his students discuss what the art and Edgar Sulite meant to them. 

And for those who prefer a more traditional Filipino martial arts book, one that focuses on techniques and patterns of response, there is an extensive final section of well over 90 pages that offers the reader black and white photo sequences that teach these.

In conclusion, Lameco Eskrima –The Legacy of Edgar Sulite, is a good edition to what some see as the next generation of Filipino martial arts books, books that focus on the teachers and their lineage.  

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