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Hi There! If you’ve reached my website www.bruceleechinesegungfubook.com it’s probably because you are interested in finding out more information about Bruce Lee’s book “Chinese Gung Fu: Philosophical Art of Self-Defense” published in 1963. Special thanks to Bill Goring for his input and knowledge of various aspects of this publication



















I started this website as a tool to help Bruce Lee fans identify authentic copies of the book. After seeing so many fakes being sold on eBay and other auction websites I was determined to set the record straight on what differentiates authentic copies from fakes. My goal is to educate fans to help keep them from being ripped off by unscrupulous (or in some cases uneducated) sellers. When you are done here please visit my other site www.bruceleewashere.com for a visual history of Bruce Lee’s life

How to tell an authentic copy from a fake. Authentic copies:

  • Have a beige cover. Copies with bright yellow or pink covers are fakes
  • Have a flat spine. Copies with a stapled spine (i.e. like a magazine or pamphlet) are fakes
  • Have the author and name of the book on the flat spine. Fakes typically have a blank spine
  • Have sharp, in-focus illustrations. Fakes usually have darker or blurrier photos
  • Have staples going entirely through the book’s inner pages near the spine (but not through the spine). These can be seen by opening the front or back cover and looking on the inside edge (see photos below for examples) 


Background on the book
Bruce Lee was good friends with James Yimm Lee (no relation). James was an accomplished martial artist in his own right and self-published several martial arts-related books on his own through his publishing company Oriental Book Sales













He was the perfect person to help Bruce publish his book in 1963. The original purchase price was just $5.00. The first chance many collectors had to purchase the book was in 1993 when Heather Holmberg and Superior Galleries held the first Bruce Lee Auctions


















At that time it was stated only 500 copies of the book were ever printed. Since then copies of the book have appeared on auctions sites like eBay on a fairly regular basis. Legitimate copies often go for a $1,000 or more and a signed copy can fetch $3,000-4,000 or more. 

Different Editions
Since the original was published in 1963 updated versions have been published. While these are not considered “fakes” they should not be confused with the original book published in 1963

First Edition - Published 1963, 102 pages, original price $5.00, published by Oriental Book Sales. This is the original book published while Bruce was alive. This book has no ISBN number














Second Edition - Published 1987, 102 pages, original price $6.50, published by Ohara Publications, Inc. This book was intentionally made to look like the original book and is clearly labeled as a reproduction














Third Edition - published 1988, 102 pages, original price $8.50, published by Ohara Publications, Inc. This book was intentionally made to look like the original book and is clearly labeled as a reproduction














Fourth Edition - published 2008, 128 pages, original price $12.95, published by Black Belt Books. This version is revised and updated with additional photos as well as commentary from Linda Lee and Shannon Lee














 
AUTHENTIC EXAMPLES

Authentic Example #1 - This is my personal copy. Click each picture for a larger version
















































Authentic Example #2 - Click each picture for a larger version

















Authentic Example #3 - Click each picture for a larger version

















Authentic Example #4 - Click each picture for a larger version



























Authentic Example #5 - Click each picture for a larger version




































Miscellaneous Authentic Examples - Click each picture for a larger version



















FAKES
​Fake Example #1 - Click each picture for a larger version

















​Fake Example #2 - Click each picture for a larger version




























​​Fake Example #3 - The seller of this book states the person they got it from had this in their collection since the 70's (40 years). While clearly a fake (note the unusually wide spacing to the right of the Chinese characters on the cover and the poor quality of the photographs), its unlikely this was made while Bruce was alive and is likely from the first set of reproductions done some time after Bruce Lee's death in 1973

















Fake Example #4 - This fake has a stapled spine like a magazine or pamphlet. Click each picture for a larger version



























Fake Example #5 - Another example of a stapled spine fake. Click each picture for a larger version




























Miscellaneous ​Fake Examples - These examples have a stapled spine like a magazine or pamphlet. Click each picture for a larger version


 
























​​Fake Example Spanish - Obviously, if the book is written in Spanish...... it's a fake

















Also visit my other Bruce Lee website www.bruceleewashere.com the web's most comprehensive visual history of Bruce Lee's life

www.bruceleechinesegungfubook.com