Did Ninjas Use Throwing Stars? A Conversation About Ninja Realities | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Did Ninjas Use Throwing Stars? A Conversation About Ninja Realities

Our friends at On Point had a fascinating discussion today with the author of a new book about ninjas.

Here's what Sam Gale Rosen, On Point's producer, told us:

"We spoke to John Man, author and historian, about his new history of ninjas: Ninja: 1,000 Years of the Shadow Warrior. Real ninjas apparently didn't quite match the picture that has been painted in popular culture. No nunchucks, no throwing stars, and it was more about spycraft than fancy footwork."

"There are shuriken, the throwing stars," Man told On Point. "But even these are contentious. I asked lots of questions about these: How did you actually use them? They're terrific things to use, I expect you've thrown one, a lot of people have them. They go into wood with a very satisfying clunk, and they look extremely dangerous, and they have these star-shaped blades. But when you think about it: How do you carry them? How do you whip them out in dark? Supposedly they were sometimes poisoned, but I'm not sure how you'd risk using them if they actually had poisoned tips and poisoned blades. I couldn't get to the bottom of this."

We'll leave it at that and let you listen to the rest of the conversation if you're interested.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

5 Under-The-Radar Reads From Librarian Nancy Pearl

Pearl shares the books she loved this year that you might not have heard of. Her list includes a Hollywood satire, two thrillers, a young adult novel and a nonfiction book about World War I.
NPR

What The Change In U.S.-Cuba Relations Might Mean For Food

The decision to normalize relations is driving all kinds of speculation about American food companies opening up shop in Cuba. But analysts say: Don't expect to see McDonald's there anytime soon.
NPR

Education Dept. Issues Framework For New College Rating System

The interim outline indicates that such factors as access, affordability and student outcomes will be key to the system first announced by President Obama in 2013.
NPR

U.S. Authorities Investigate, Sony Reels From Computer Hack

The White House has stopped short of naming North Korea as the aggressor in the cyberattack against Sony Pictures. That hack resulted in the cancellation of the film The Interview.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.