Authenticity has no objective standard, nor is it inherent in any object or individual. Rather, authenticity is a social construct whose meaning is historically and culturally variable and, commonly, relationally defined in contradistinction to some social process (e.g., increasing the use of industrial procedures in farming, or commercialization in rap music). Used in common parlance, the concept of authenticity has highly affective, positive connotations. Authenticity, accordingly, may be considered a context-specific measure of legitimacy. Qualities that frequently induce the perception of authenticity include sincerity of sentiment (rather than utilitarian cost-benefit reasoning), natural origins (in opposition to industrial origins), local origins (rather than origins within a global market of commodities), and original self-expression (rather than expression that is coerced via external, normative, or commercial pressures to ...

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