Wuxia and Westerns Are the Same Genre—Is That Why They Reached Peak Popularity Together?

Okay, to be precise, they are both sub-genres of a genre with no widely recognized name. Maybe the “‘Stern” genre?

I’ve said for years that wuxia is closer to westerns than any other genre well-known among English speakers, and I’m far from the only person who says this. That’s why some people refer to wuxia as ‘easterns’ (westerns set in East Asia).

The Story Grid by Shawn Coyne defines different genres. According to him, westerns don’t have to be set in North America. They only need a frontier setting with tenuous ‘law and order.’ This describes much of East Asia at various points of history.

What’s a ‘frontier’ setting? Coyne doesn’t define that, but I can.

Continue reading