One of the researchers I most respect and enjoy chatting or bouting with is Da’Mon Stith, one of the driving forces behind HAMAA, the Historical African Martial Arts Association. The challenges faced in studying such a vast collection of arts, so few of which were codified, and which have survived in part via dance, sport, and as elements of later systems present hurdles that require delicate, sophisticated approaches. He does this remarkably well, and in my view sets an excellent example for how one should set about exploring a rich, difficult corpus with appropriate caution, passion, and effectiveness.
I say often that if Da’Mon is teaching anything, take it—you will learn something and have a blast. This is part one of his interview with the equally wonderful Dr. Khorasani.