Here comes the semantics. Some modern genres appear to be more restricting than others in terms of execution/exploration of theme and meaning. Is this because of the authors or the audience/critic? Or both? A book with the trappings of medieval/urban/future fantasy won't get lauded as literary fiction. Neither will a humour or horror piece. It's not going to be in pretentious book clubs or become a mandatory high school piece. Its reviews will be centered on the criteria of the genre, as they probably should be, but does that create an endless cycle that limits the potential of writers in those genres? While the stories that are sold as historical fiction, literary fiction (huh?), crime, thriller, and actual sci fi (not fantasy sci fi) are always set to standards invoking a more in-depth use/exploration of theme, characters, and plot. I will refrain from using the word "can." The answer is always yes. Anything can. fuck can. Do modern exceptions actually occur in the real world, right now? Second, does it even matter? Last, if a genre-limited piece did gain enough significance in the literary world, would its genre be relabeled to something like literary fiction? Note: I know ancient pieces of fiction that would be labelled all sorts of genres today end up being very important. I.e. Beowulf or The Divine Comedy, but I'm not considering those as evidence for a multitude of situational reasons.