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Related: art - criticism - value - work of art

Usage example: bestsellers and genre fiction have no literary merit, literary fiction has. [May 2006]

Contrast: relativism


Artistic merit is an English language term used in relation to cultural products when referring to the judgment of their perceived quality or value as works of art.

It is also a term frequently encountered in obscenity and censorship trials. For example, it has been said that the difference between erotica and pornography is artistic merit. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artistic_merit [Aug 2005]

Pornography, erotica and artistic merit

As a concept, the term erotica has a connotation of artistic merit.

The term pornography however, nearly always has negative connotations of low artistic merit, as compared to the more esteemed erotica.

Euphemisms such as adult film, adult video and adult bookstore are generally preferred within the industry producing these works (namely the adult industry). In literature, the difference is further illustrated by the usage differentiation between erotic literature and the stroke book, the latter being for masturbatory purposes only.

An example in the film industry is Michael Winterbottom's 2004 film 9 Songs which features a number of explicit scenes of unsimulated sex. The BBFC granted it an 18 certificate for because of its artistic merit.

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