4 Bruce Lee – 李小龍 (Lǐxiǎolóng)

Nathan Abarca

simplified Chinese: 李小龍; pinyin: Lǐxiǎolóng

Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee is an American-born actor who uses martial arts and acrobatics skills in movies and TV shows such as “Green Hornet” and to teach his students. Lee’s original and Chinese name is “Li Jun Fan,” 李振藩 . The pinyin of Lee’s American name of Bruce Lee is Lǐ Xiǎolóng with the Chinese characters 李小龍. The meaning of Lee’s English name and his Cantonese name “Li Jun Fan” is “Little Dragon.” The reason why Lee decided to have a screen name as “Bruce Lee” is because after Lee was born in three months, his nurse gave him the name in the birthing hospital. What led Lee to become popular by having his cultural phenomenon of martial arts successful was because when Lee was a teenager, he was bullied and attacked by gangs and British students, so Lee decided to learn Kung Fu to defend himself from them. Although Lee was street fighting and had issues with the police before he turned 18 years old, but Lee believed that martial arts should be used for self-defense and to do good actions instead of using it for evil purposes. One of Lee’s cultural phenomena which led him to form his own martial arts techniques such as the “jeet kune do,” which Lee mixed together with ancient kung fu, boxing, and fencing. What made Lee popular as an actor was his use of martial arts skills in movies such as “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon“, “The Matrix“, and “Fist of Fury“. He also became popular for his opposition against racism. When he starred in the movie “Fist of Fury,” Lee destroyed signs that were offensive against the Chinese that read “No Dogs and Chinese Allowed” and “Sick Man of Asia.” At the time this movie came out, cross-cultural engagement was not very popular, so Lee’s influence discussions in this way. Also, Lee’s cultural phenomenon of martial arts was to change the way of how martial arts were being taught because when he opened his own martial arts studio at Seattle in 1970, Lee made his studio different by teaching to non-Chinese, which Chinese martial arts teachers and students didn’t want any one-Chinese learn martial arts techniques. What made Lee more popular as a philosopher was his ideology that we must be ourselves, express ourselves, and have faith in our abilities especially Lee has made examples of practicing his own philosophy by controlling his own emotions and his success as an actor and martial artist.


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Bruce Lee - 李小龍 (Lǐxiǎolóng) Copyright © 2023 by Nathan Abarca is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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