Scharfstein briefly discusses that artists in the medieval ages signed their work to show pride in their work, or to show that a "professional" known for their proficiency in a particular art form had been hired to create an art piece, rather than to gain recognition. So why has the practice of signing pieces of art evolved to the point it has today? Is it because medieval artists focused more on religious works, so the point of creating art was to become closer to the divine rather than gaining personal recognition? Or was it because the worry of having the idea of an art piece being stolen was not as important as it is in today's world?
In the American culture, we value originality so much that we become so protective of our thoughts and ideas, and become terrified at the thought of someone else "stealing our originality".