P. D. Magnus
State University of New York, Albany
Jason D'Cruz
State University of New York, Albany
Nelson Goodman's distinction between autographic and allographic arts is appealing, we suggest, because it promises to resolve several prima facie puzzles. We consider and rebut a recent argument that alleges that digital images explode the autographic/allographic distinction. Regardless, there is another familiar problem with the distinction, especially as Goodman formulates it: it seems to entirely ignore an important sense in which all artworks are historical. We note in reply that some artworks can be considered both as historical products and as formal structures. Talk about such works is ambiguous between the two conceptions. This allows us to recover Goodman's distinction: art forms that are ambiguous in this way are allographic. With that formulation settled, we argue that digital images are allographic. We conclude by considering the objection that digital photographs, unlike other digital images, would count as autographic by our criterion; we reply that this points to the vexed nature of photography rather than any problem with the distinction
Keywords allographic  autographic  digital art  goodman
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/jaac.12117
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Why Digital Pictures Are Not Notational Representations.John Zeimbekis - 2015 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 73 (4):449-453.
Preserving the Autographic/Allographic Distinction.Jason D'cruz & P. D. Magnus - 2015 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 73 (4):453-457.
Vaccine Selfie. The Double Face of Self-Representation in Covid-19 Era.Anna Chiara Sabatino - 2021 - Aisthesis: Pratiche, Linguaggi E Saperi Dell’Estetico 14 (1):101-108.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

On Goodman’s Autographic/Allographic Distinction.Jesper Ryberg - 1998 - Danish Yearbook of Philosophy 33 (1):71-83.
Nelson Goodman's Autographic-Allographic.Remei Capdevila Werning - 2009 - In G. Ernst, J. Steinbrenner & O. Scholz (eds.), From Logic to Art: Themes From Nelson Goodman. Ontos. pp. 269.
Replicative Forgery.John Zeimbekis - 2004 - Art and Cognition Workshops.
Autographic and Allographic Art Revisited.Jerrold Levinson - 1980 - Philosophical Studies 38 (4):367 - 383.
Identity of the Work of Art.Stefan Ristic - 2010 - Filozofija I Društvo 21 (2):293-308.
Identifying and Reconciling Two Images of “Man”.David Hodgson - 2012 - Humana.Mente - Journal of Philosophical Studies 21.
Cultura y contracultura digital: un ensayo.Jorge Portilla - 2011 - Apuntes Filosóficos 20 (39).


Added to PP index

Total views
427 ( #22,663 of 2,506,010 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
38 ( #23,444 of 2,506,010 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes