Some of this relates to my experiences as a science fiction writer in an English department. People declared that they were writing literature, but that to me seemed like writing with an intentionality toward a place in history rather than focusing on quality of the work at hand. Most of what the local academics were doing was not particularly original or interesting, but it had some of the surface features of more interesting writer's work. Elsewhere, I've discussed whether art was a class marker, that what certain privileged people did was art; what the rest of us did was entertainment, illustration, snapshots. Too often the intention of the self-declared artist is to be superior to some group of other people by being different, not by transcending the formalities of a genre. Ansel Adams even expressed reservations about photographers who focused too much on being artists and refused to actually work professionally as photographers (Adams's Autobiography. Let's throw art forgeries and Gertrude Stein's comment that masterpieces exist for themselves, not for a purpose (perhaps that's my take on Stein's comments). If we're trying to do Art and aim the work at such an abstraction, will we always end up with a different set of cliches than the snapshooters? Most of fiction and poetry written by professors who sneered at science fiction was more about looking like literature than being compelling reading for any audience. But lot of genre fiction is formalist in a not always convincing way, too. Forgeries appear to convince only the generation of the forger because he's playing with the assumptions of his time about what the painters he's forging were doing and what great art is. When those assumptions change, his forgeries fall apart. Is trying to write Literature or make Art over all other considerations useful? Why?